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Federal Judge Smacks Down Arpaio

It seems fascist Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Arizona is finally getting reined in. A federal judge has ruled that Arpaio and his department have committed rampant civil rights violations by targeting Latinos for traffic stops and much more.

A federal judge ruled on Friday that Sheriff Joe Arpaio and his deputies had violated the constitutional rights of Latinos by targeting them during raids and traffic stops here and throughout Maricopa County.

With his ruling, Judge G. Murray Snow of United States District Court delivered the most decisive defeat so far to Sheriff Arpaio, who has come to symbolize Arizona’s strict approach to immigration enforcement by making it the leading mission for many of the 800 deputies under his command at the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office.

At 142 pages, the decision is peppered with stinging criticism of the policies and practices espoused by Sheriff Arpaio, who Judge Snow said had turned much of his focus to arresting immigrants who were in the country illegally, in most cases civil violations, at the expense of fighting crimes.

He said the sheriff relied on racial profiling and illegal detentions to target Latinos, using their ethnicity as the main basis for suspecting they were in the country illegally. Many of the people targeted were American citizens or legal residents.

Everyone knew this was going on. Hell, Arpaio practically brags about it. Nice to see a higher authority actually doing something about it.

Comments

  1. erichoug says

    Isn’t this the same Joe Arpaio that used his office to investigate, arrest and generally harass his political enemies? Why isn’t he in jail?

  2. says

    Now, look, Ed Brayton, if you want to fight real crime, like Mexicans comin’ in here and mowing our lawns, you’re going to have to cut back on fighting minor violations, like actual crimes.
    Besides, harassing Hispanics is easier. Sometimes, they just stand there in a line, outside the LumberMart. It’s a real time saver.

  3. Artor says

    Maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t see how this results in anything being done about Arpaio’s abuses. There’s now an official declaration that he’s been a bad boy, but until I see Arpaio doing the perp walk in cuffs and facing a prison sentence, this ruling is pretty much an empty formality. Can someone please prove me wrong?

  4. baal says

    Good news but this isn’t enough. Arpaio belongs in federal jail. Also, the ruling was fairly narrow to the scope of his future behavior. He can escape the orders by putting more words on the paper work.

  5. says

    There’s now an official declaration that he’s been a bad boy, but until I see Arpaio doing the perp walk in cuffs and facing a prison sentence

    I would wish it was a sentence at Maricopa County Jail, but similar to Hell itself, I wouldn’t wish that on anyone.

  6. says

    Look, you have prioritize. There are only so many hours in the day. He can either spend his time grandstanding for cameras or investigating child rape cases. What is more important to the community?

    Why hasn’t he been indicted yet?

  7. Ben P says

    Maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t see how this results in anything being done about Arpaio’s abuses. There’s now an official declaration that he’s been a bad boy, but until I see Arpaio doing the perp walk in cuffs and facing a prison sentence, this ruling is pretty much an empty formality. Can someone please prove me wrong?

    Well, when your position is that “the duly elected Sheriff should be put in jail” I don’t see much appeasing you.

    But in reality this is pretty signifant. The decision is a declaration by a federal court that the Sherrif’s department violated the law, and a direct order to discontinue the offending conduct. Depending on the exact type of suit, it also likely opens the door for damages by any specific individuals who were harmed by the policy.

    The fastest way to end up in jail, or out of control of your own agency is to defy orders of a federal court.

    That’s precisely what the Central High Crisis in 1957 was. A federal court ordered the Little Rock School system to desegregate. The school system was (purportedly) going to comply and allowed black students to enroll for the fall semester, but the governor said “nuh-uh” and deployed the national guard to support the segregationists and prohibit any African American students from entering the school. Eisenhower in turn, nationalized the Guard, directly ordered them to stand down, and deployed troops from the 101st Airborne Division to ensure that the integration took place.

  8. Trebuchet says

    Nancy Grace and her buddies at HLN have all been sucking up to Sheriff Joe during the Jodi Arias trial. Disgusting. Arpaio, meanwhile, flip-flops on whether to let her give media interviews about twice a week.

  9. pianoman, Heathen & Torontophile says

    “Eisenhower in turn, nationalized the Guard.”

    Hey, doesn’t that make Eisenhower a socialist?? ha!

  10. D. C. Sessions says

    Do you really think the sheriff from hell gives a damn?

    No, because he’s not paying the tab — I am.

    Meanwhile, there are whole filing cabinets full of violent crime cases that were closed without investigation.

  11. Ichthyic says

    A federal judge ruled on Friday that Sheriff Joe Arpaio and his deputies had violated the constitutional rights of Latinos by targeting them during raids and traffic stops here and throughout Maricopa County.

    I hate how these issues always get framed like this.

    it isn’t the case that “the constitutional rights of Latinos” were violated. Instead, all American’s rights are violated by these kinds of actions.

    you can’t frame this as if it is an issue of “latino” rights, damnit! We all have the same rights, that’s the fucking point!

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