Theodore's World: Judge Finds Grounds to Sanction Arizona Sheriff's Office

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February 15, 2010

Judge Finds Grounds to Sanction Arizona Sheriff's Office

Judge Finds Grounds to Sanction Arizona Sheriff's Office

FOX News

A federal judge has found grounds for sanctioning an Arizona sheriff's office for its acknowledged destruction of records in a lawsuit that accuses deputies of racially profiling countless Hispanics in immigration patrols.

U.S. District Judge Murray Snow held off on imposing the sanctions against the office of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio in the Friday ruling, but indicted he would do so at a later date once related issues were ironed out.

Since early 2008, Arpaio has run 13 immigration and crimes sweeps consisting of deputies and posse volunteers who flood an area of a city — in some cases heavily Latino areas — to seek out traffic violators and arrest other offenders.

The handful of Latinos who filed the lawsuit against Arpaio's office alleged that officers based some traffic stops on the race of Hispanics who were in vehicles, had no probable cause to pull them over and made the stops so they could inquire about their immigration status.

Arpaio is known for tough jail policies, including housing inmates in canvas tents, and pushing the bounds for how local law enforcement agencies can confront illegal immigration.

The U.S. Justice Department said it's investigating his office for alleged discrimination and for unconstitutional searches and seizures, but won't provide any details of its examination. The sheriff believes the inquiry is focused on his immigration efforts.

Arpaio has repeatedly denied the racial profiling allegations, saying people pulled over in the sweeps were approached because deputies had probable cause to believe they had committed crimes. It was only afterward that deputies found many of them were illegal immigrants, he has said.

Some sheriff's officials have acknowledged deleting their e-mails about the patrols and throwing away and shredding officers' records of traffic stops made during the sweeps.

Snow said the sheriff's office was negligent for not holding onto the documents and that the failure to preserve them is enough to justify sanctions. The judge asked plaintiff's attorneys to suggest unspecified "adverse inferences" that could be drawn from the destruction of officers' records of traffic stops made during the sweeps.
Peter Kozinets, one of those attorneys, said Saturday that the document destruction deprived his clients of records that would have shown deputies were selective in whom they approached during the sweeps.
The sheriff's office said the destruction was an honest error that sprung from a top official not telling others in his office to preserve the documents.
The office also said the traffic-stop records were thrown away after supervisors tabulated statistics from them and that thousands of other documents have been handed over.
"We thought the ruling was extremely fair and we are pleased to cooperate," said Dave Hendershott, chief deputy of the sheriff's office. "It clearly shows that the judge understood that it was an unintentional oversight. We are very pleased with the ruling."
Snow also said that plaintiff's attorneys can again depose Arpaio to question him about his own 800-page immigration file, which was covered by a documents request but wasn't handed over before his first deposition in mid-December.


Blogs 4 Borders interviewed Sheriff Joe awhile back.


Wild Thing's comment.........

The U.S. Justice Department said it's investigating his office for alleged discrimination and for unconstitutional searches and seizures, but won't provide any details of its examination.

Holder's office

Any Police organization that tries to uphold this Republic's laws against illegal immigration seems to find itself on the wrong side of the Obama administration.

Sheriff Joe is a great person and a great Patriot! If anyone can do it Sheriff Joe can. He is the type of man we need in every city state an county to turn this country around.

We have a lot to thank Sheriff Joe for.

He is leading the way back to SANITY.

God Bless Sheriff Joe!

....Thank you Mark for sending this to me.

3rd Mar.Div. 1st Battalion 9th Marine Regiment
1/9 Marines aka The Walking Dead
VN 66-67

Posted by Wild Thing at February 15, 2010 06:47 AM


Here you have Sheriff Arpaio doing all he can to protect the people of Arizona and the United States from invaders and criminals and on the other hand you have the Justice Department trying to stop him. You would think the Justice Department would be doing all it could to support him.

We can't blame this all on Obama either. Bush's Justice Department prosecuted border guards who returned fire on drug runners shooting at them.

Posted by: BobF at February 15, 2010 10:03 AM

Love how Sheriff Joe keeps getting REELECTED in Arizona, eh.... si?

Posted by: darthcrUSAderworldtour07 at February 15, 2010 10:20 AM

Sheriff Joe just uses common sense in his job. The political establishment hates him for his success and popularity.

Posted by: TomR at February 15, 2010 11:20 AM

Again we have the FEDs overreaching their authority and meddling in a states business. The way I see it, it can not be discrimination or civil rights violation, this is a ruse to get access to that county's records, (since they are here illegally) unless they are Legal citizens Sheriff Arpaio has been around too long to get caught in that trap.

If I remember right, not even the State Police can come into a county and take over, without the State Attorney General's consent and that has to be backed up on a court order. The Sheriff has jurisdiction over his county, he's the chief Law enforcement officer in that county. At least that's the way it use to work.

The problem arises from the fact Sheriff Joe is enforcing the law as it is written and its the Feds who wrote the law. They should change it but that would make them look soft on crime. So they have to find a scapegoat...Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

What's really going on here, Sheriff Joe is messing with prospective democrat voters and here is the reason obama concerned about their "Rights". Sorta like the Terrorists have rights. In other words non-existent rights.

C'mon November...ugh I don't believe I just said that, we got another Winter storm coming...maybe I'll move to Texas. Oh shit, they got snow too...

Posted by: Mark at February 15, 2010 11:37 AM

The real problem with Sheriff Joe is very obvious to someone who has admired and followed this American Hero.
And that folks, is big time crime to the Feds. They do not enjoy having some little "local yokel" sheriff doing the job they neglect to do, and doing well as he does it.
Profiling? I would hope so. How many red haired irish guys are slipping over the USMEX border every day?
Anyone stopped by Sheriff Joe is on their way immediately after assuring him that they are legal. He ain't against Meskin descent Americans. It is Illegal Meskins that he has a problem with.
If I thought that the cops were looking for a good looking stud type guy, I would expect them to pull me over as well.
Having family and friends in Maricopa County, I am very aware of his popularity with law abiding citizens. Now, my sorry assed nephew doesn't think much of him and his green bologna. But I think that deep inside he may actually like him, because he keeps getting put back in Joes Jail.

"Never Forget that Radical Islam killed 14 Americans at Ft Hood Texas on 11/5/09!"

Posted by: Frankly Opinionated at February 15, 2010 06:58 PM

BobF., well said that is exactly what is happening and it is a disgrace.

Darth, yes he is such a good man. And the people appreciate him like you said. It is just the hard lefties that are making trouble. grrrr

Tom, they sure do, pure hate from the left toward him.

Mark, good take on it and sooo true too.
LOL that is so funny how you put that about November. hahahahaha

Frankly, DITTO that!!!

Posted by: Wild Thing at February 15, 2010 07:18 PM