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As Justice Department Threatens Suit, Sheriff Arpaio’s Record Speaks for Itself

by Jacquelyn Mahendra on 08/18/2010 at 4:09pm

According to the Washington Post:

Justice Department officials in Washington have issued a rare threat to sue Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio if he does not cooperate with their investigation of whether he discriminates against Hispanics. The civil rights inquiry is one of two that target the man who calls himself “America’s toughest sheriff.” A federal grand jury in Phoenix is examining whether Arpaio has used his power to investigate and intimidate political opponents and whether his office misappropriated government money, sources said.

In June, America’s Voice Education Fund released a new report detailing the long, disturbing and ineffective record of Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, AZ. The report reveals some 21 examples of Arpaio’s disturbing record, such as:

  • Violent crime rates are up in Arpaio’s jurisdiction while they have fallen throughout the rest of Arizona.

  • Arpaio has failed to serve over 40,000 felony warrants. Arpaio is suspected of misspending $50 million in taxpayer funds and has refused to turn over records for an investigation.

  • Over 2,700 lawsuits have been filed against Arpaio and he’s been investigated by the FBI and the U.S. Departments of Justice and Labor.

  • Evidence exists that Arpaio forced an undocumented mother to give birth while handcuffed to a bed.

Arpaio, who sparked national protests last month, loves the spotlight (he even used taxpayer money to pay for a reality TV show). There’s no doubt he’ll use this latest development to try to play the victim and crowd the news-show circuits. What’s unclear is when and how Arpaio — after so many years spent trampling the Constitution — will finally get served the justice he deserves.

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