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Law and Disorder in the Wild Wild West
November 5, 2009 1:04 PM   Subscribe

Maricopa County Sherriff Joe Arpaio is controversial to be sure. He has been accused of using his office to retaliate against critics, and he has thumbed his nose at the feds. Are his rank and file officers following his lead? What's up with this?
posted by Crotalus (71 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
The DoJ has finally bothered to actually notice what he's up to, so I have a feeling that some chickens are homeward bound as we speak.
posted by Pope Guilty at 1:08 PM on November 5, 2009 [5 favorites]


I hope when he finally goes to jail he has to live in a tent and wear pink. What a world class dick.
posted by birdherder at 1:09 PM on November 5, 2009 [4 favorites]


this will all go away when Arizona outsources the courts to private corporations.
posted by TrialByMedia at 1:23 PM on November 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


Didn't we just do this?
posted by adamvasco at 1:23 PM on November 5, 2009


I read a letter from Arpaio to Rev. Jackson. It was extremely literate. Quite surprised me!
posted by five fresh fish at 1:26 PM on November 5, 2009


What's up with this?

Folks, watch the video. A sheriff's officer walks up behind a defense attorney while she is addressing the judge. He takes papers off of her table...and walks away with them to make copies. All was captured on court videocams.

Adam Stoddard, the Maricopa County Sheriff's detention officer is claiming that he took the documents from the defense table while the defense attorney was addressing the judge because it was "... material that court security employees had not previously screened.

...Stoddard told the judge that when he walked near the defense attorney's table he recognized some documents that weren't previously screened, Liddy said, so he had the paperwork copied for the record and returned it to the defendant's table.

[Judge Gary] Donahoe reviewed the paperwork in question on Friday and determined that the documents were subject to attorney-client privilege, [Tom] Liddy [an attorney for the Sheriff's Office] said."*
posted by ericb at 1:27 PM on November 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


"...the FBI has been investigating Arpaio since the Bush Administration..."

OK, that seems a bit hard to swallow. Arpaio seems like Bush's kind of guy.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 1:28 PM on November 5, 2009 [4 favorites]




Oops, that's in your post. Sorry.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:30 PM on November 5, 2009


This FPP could have been framed better. Because of the set-up many here will likely harp on the fact that we have discussed Arpaio before. I assume Crotalus intended the focus of this post to be on the recent actions that took place in a county courthouse by folks who work for/report to Arpaio.

Arizona court officers help themselves to defense documents.
"Arizona Defense Attorney Joanne Cuccia was in court at the podium arguing on behalf of her client during a sentencing hearing when that client, Antonio Lozano, noticed two detention officers pilfering a document from Cuccia's fies behind her back. The incident, captured on video, interrupted the hearing, enraged defense attorneys and, unbelievably, spurred the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office to defend the officers' actions.

Legal documents are privileged information, as well as private property, and so protected from casual pawing by agents of the state. But that didn't prevent Officer Adam Stoddard from casually strolling over to the table where Cuccia's files were laid out, extracting and reading a document, and then handing it to a colleague to be photocopied. His actions were recorded by security cameras.

Court officers are allowed to screen files to make sure that they don't contain contraband, and the Sheriff's office claims that was what Stoddard was doing -- examining a document that had escaped the screening process. But unless a pistol is duct-taped to a letter, officers aren't permitted to help themselves to confidential memos, briefs, motions, letters or any of the other contents of an attorney's files. [more...]"
posted by ericb at 1:34 PM on November 5, 2009 [11 favorites]


That video is chilling.
posted by odinsdream at 1:34 PM on November 5, 2009 [9 favorites]





“”You know what? They can take away anything they want. I’m still the elected sheriff,” Sheriff Arpaio told Fox News’ Glenn Beck this week. “I’m still going to enforce the state laws and I’m going to enforce the federal laws.”

I'm not all that familiar with Arizona, but I'm pretty sure enforcing federal laws is not part of a sheriff's job description anywhere, except in this jerk's imagination.
posted by dortmunder at 1:36 PM on November 5, 2009


I am so glad I left that shithole of a state. I cannot believe how brazenly Arpaio and his henchmen break the law and are never called out for it. What a video.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 1:39 PM on November 5, 2009


Bit more on the swiped documents.
posted by floam at 1:39 PM on November 5, 2009




"...[Defense attorney Joanne] Cuccia was justifiably upset, and requested a hearing. That hearing was last week. According to freelance journalist Nick Martin, who writes at the Heat City blog, [Maricopa County Sheriff's Department detention officer Adam] Stoddard's story changed several times over the course of the hearing. His main defense was apparently that he spotted 'keywords' on the document that made him think it contained threats to the courtroom. The problem with that story is that if you watch the video, he swiped the document from the middle of the file. It wasn't lying in open view. Which leaves open the question of why, in open court, he went snooping through a defense attorney's file in the first place.

I don't know Arizona law, so perhaps a Hit & Run reader with some experience there can help out. Could it possibly be legal for a law enforcement official to meander up to the defense table, begin reading the defense team's files, then take documents from said files without notifying the attorney? That sounds absurd on its face, even for Maricopa County.

It gets weirder. According to Heat City, the purpose of Friday's hearing was to determine if Stoddard had violated the attorney-client privilege of Cuccia's client, Antonio Lozano, and/or if Stoddard should be held in contempt of court. But Judge Gary Donahoe ruled that because the swiped document itself is protected by attorney-client privilege Stoddard wouldn't be able to mount his "keyword" defense, because the contents of the document can't be divulged. According to Heat City, Donahoe said Lozano would have to wave attorney-client privilege if he wanted to proceed with the hearing on whether Stoddard violated his rights.

If this is an accurate portrayal of the hearing, stand back and admire the absurdity: Judge Donahoe is refusing to punish Stoddard for possibly violating Lozano's attorney-client privilege unless Lozano waives his attorney-client privilege."*
posted by ericb at 1:41 PM on November 5, 2009 [13 favorites]


Also, that judge sucks. She should've screamed or threw the gavel at that deputy if she actually cared about the law. Maybe she's terrified of any consequences of challenging Arpaio.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:45 PM on November 5, 2009 [7 favorites]


Also, that judge sucks. She should've screamed or threw the gavel at that deputy if she actually cared about the law. Maybe she's terrified of any consequences of challenging Arpaio.

I totally agree -- I don't know any judges personally so I don't know what they're actually like, but I was shocked at the lack of at the very least "Deputy? Could you approach the bench, please? Would you like to explain me me just what you were doing?". I understand the "calm down" bit and the "let's talk about this at another time" bit, I think those make sense, but also the fact that she seemed to think whether or not the letter had been returned was the biggest issue and there was nothing else to discuss seems crazy to me.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 1:55 PM on November 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


I watched this earlier in the week, it was a very chilling 9 minutes of video even with very little "action".

While I'm sure the defendant is guilty of something, the impunity in which the court riffled through what should be protected documents made me sick to my stomach.

If they do this on camera, in front of a judge, imagine what they do off camera.

I hope the feds get involved.

Things rot from the head.
posted by bottlebrushtree at 1:57 PM on November 5, 2009 [6 favorites]


I don't know any judges personally so I don't know what they're actually like

I do. My father is a judge, and I thought that I would call him, show him the video, and see what he had to say about it.

He said he would have done the following:

1.) He would order the document to be returned immediately.
2.) He would call the deputy's boss (I'm a little fuzzy on department hierarchy. I am assuming Arpaio is his boss?)
3.) He would personally try to get the deputy fired, and bar him from his courtroom.
4.) Immediately instigate contempt proceedings.

So, yeah. This judge is in someone's pocket.
posted by orville sash at 2:03 PM on November 5, 2009 [25 favorites]


While I'm sure the defendant is guilty of something...

Lozano had already been deemed guilty. This was a sentencing hearing.
posted by ericb at 2:06 PM on November 5, 2009


If they do this on camera, in front of a judge, imagine what they do off camera. I hope the feds get involved.

As mentioned above ...
"Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio has been notorious for years for using his power to spy on opponents, and even arrest journalists -- executives with the weekly Phoenix New Times -- who have been critical of his conduct. Arpaio and the Sheriff's Office are reportedly being investigated by the FBI for using threats and intimidation to settle political scores. Among those known to have been scrutinized, arrested or raided by Arpaio's deputies are candidates who ran against Arpaio, a civil liberties attorney and many political opponents in county and state office."*
posted by ericb at 2:09 PM on November 5, 2009



Note to self.

Go out in a blaze of gunfire rather than be arrested and wind up entering a U.S. court as a defendant.
posted by notreally at 2:13 PM on November 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


This looks like big, fat, ripe fruit for picking by someone wanting to make a name for themselves, and also an army of lawyers to file the thousands of civil suits.

And then, yes; pink jumpsuits with numbers on them for the sheriff, and the rest of his life in prison. And suitable punishments for his flunkies and enablers.

This isn't the rule of one man, this is a homegrown crime syndicate that's taken over a big chunk of AZ. One man couldn't do this alone; he's had help. Time to bring out the big guns.
posted by emjaybee at 2:17 PM on November 5, 2009 [3 favorites]


Corrupt, ruthless and sadistic, Arpaio is pretty much the living avatar of everything that's wrong with the US Justice system. I'm surprised he's made it this long, honestly - he seems to have a mafia sort of thing going on locally, but I'm surprised he hasn't been removed from higher up yet. The number of reports of abuses are staggering.

He's pretty much destroyed my opinion of Arizona as a state.
posted by Mitrovarr at 2:19 PM on November 5, 2009


Everything about this bewilders me: a system where court officers can screen legal files? And a judge and, apparently, a prosecutor, watch as an officer reads the contents of a defense attorney's file and neither says a thing? And when the defense attorney catches on and complains and the matter is set for a hearing, disclosure of the privileged material is required so the officers can defend themselves? (Why oh why is disclosure required for defense of them? Is it OK to snoop depending on the contents of what they snoop on?)

I can't imagine any of this happening in Washington. The strictures against any disclosure of defense materials are clear and enforced.
posted by bearwife at 2:26 PM on November 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Everything about this bewilders me: a system where court officers can screen legal files?

I was really floored and couldn't understand why the officer would have any business anywhere near that table. floam's link above does provide a plausible scenario for this. The officer could have suspected that there was a note from the inmate to other inmates, or for the attorney to do something illegal on his behalf. But, under scrutiny, the officer could not provide any reasons and the documents were already approved by the court. So, there could be a legal and proper reason for such a thing, but this doesn't seem like it.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:30 PM on November 5, 2009


This isn't flippant but a serious question.

Why hasn't anyone capped Arpaio yet?

Humiliating gang members and psychos, raging a war against typically violent mexican people smugglers and just being an all round douchebag? Seems like an extremely large percentage of the criminal underworld should want this guy's head on a platter!

I'm not encouraging it by any means (I want the bastard to be prosecuted by the institution he's corruped) but just wondering why he hasn't pissed off the wrong person yet.
posted by Talez at 2:32 PM on November 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Why hasn't anyone capped Arpaio yet?

It's always stumped me why no one's taken the law into their own hands regarding this horrid cowboy, absolutely one of America's lowest ebbs in the past few decades.

Come to think of it - can someone tell me how things could be any worse if Arpaio and the rest of his power-drunk force was tarred and feathered, run out of town, and replaced with street justice?
posted by porn in the woods at 2:41 PM on November 5, 2009


can someone tell me how things could be any worse if Arpaio and the rest of his power-drunk force was tarred and feathered, run out of town, and replaced with street justice?

Illegal Mexican immigrants would be running around the streets of Phoenix, smoking dope openly and having gun fights shouting "Arriba! Arriba!"

Or at least that's what the conservative press would have me believe.
posted by Talez at 2:44 PM on November 5, 2009 [5 favorites]


Why hasn't anyone capped Arpaio yet?

Hypothesis for argument's sake:

Arpaio is in league with drug smugglers or is one himself, and much of the harassing brown people is really about bringing mules to a central point and collecting their shipments for later distribution.

So fucking with Arpaio means not only dealing with Maricopa thugs, but also with enforcers from either the organized crime he affiliates with or runs.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 2:45 PM on November 5, 2009 [10 favorites]


The comments linked to in in the Christian Science Monitor article are chilling. It seems that at least some people think he's a hero.
posted by fingerbang at 2:46 PM on November 5, 2009


The comments linked to in in the Christian Science Monitor article are chilling. It seems that at least some people think he's a hero.

If only we could find some way to power our cities with the contempt that the citizenry at large shows due process. America would no longer be dependent on foreign oil!
posted by Talez at 2:51 PM on November 5, 2009 [4 favorites]


Talez: This isn't flippant but a serious question.

Why hasn't anyone capped Arpaio yet?

Humiliating gang members and psychos, raging a war against typically violent mexican people smugglers and just being an all round douchebag? Seems like an extremely large percentage of the criminal underworld should want this guy's head on a platter!

I'm not encouraging it by any means (I want the bastard to be prosecuted by the institution he's corruped) but just wondering why he hasn't pissed off the wrong person yet.
I ask the same question every time his name comes up; surely among all the people he's fucked over, railroaded, or mistreated, it only takes one to decide to take him out for him to be dead. Yet, there he is, 77 and leading a good, rich life.
ROU_Xenophobe: Hypothesis for argument's sake:

Arpaio is in league with drug smugglers or is one himself, and much of the harassing brown people is really about bringing mules to a central point and collecting their shipments for later distribution.

So fucking with Arpaio means not only dealing with Maricopa thugs, but also with enforcers from either the organized crime he affiliates with or runs.
And then I read this. Whoa. Not only is that an astonishingly plausible explanation for Talez' question- such that I'm amazed I've never heard anyone suggest that- but even if it isn't true, it would make for a hell of a screenplay! The idea of "bringing mules to a central point" under the guise of a tough on crime bastard is... stunningly brilliant. You'd think the truth about Arpaio would leak out, but maybe it's only a few who are better treated while in jail and well compensated when they get out, and the rest are just unfortunate convicts who suffer for the sake of keeping up the illusion.
posted by hincandenza at 2:59 PM on November 5, 2009 [4 favorites]


My grandparents think he's great, but then again, they're bigots who think it's witty to joke about "illegals" getting run over.

Based on this most recent evidence, it looks like there's a ton of corruption beyond the basic "abuse power to report non-violent undocumented workers." Corruption that even your standard, meat-and-potatoes, tough on crime/immigration conservative (who likes the tent prisons and Illegal Immigration Hotline) will get upset over, unless they think fascism is justified to advance their ideal policies.
posted by mccarty.tim at 3:11 PM on November 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


It's certainly not unheard of for sheriffs to be in cahoots with gangs or other organized crime, even while they make a lot of noise about rounding up the criminals who didn't pay them off (or the enemies of those who did) or whatever.
posted by Bokononist at 3:13 PM on November 5, 2009


The video of that judge is completely fucking insane. Her "let's all calm down about this COMPLETELY BATSHIT INSANE THING THAT JUST HAPPENED" is incredible. Her tone and disposition is what I found so chilling about the video. While I certainly have no way of knowing for sure, it's exactly the kind of thing you'd expect her to say if she was either scared shitless of calling those guys out in her courtroom, or because she's on their side. I'm leaning towards the first option, but damn. That shit is fucking scary.
posted by odinsdream at 3:14 PM on November 5, 2009


>
That's an interesting conspiracy theory. I love it. Like the saying goes, keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.

By talking a big anti-immigration game, he wins over the Glenn Becks and Lou Dobbses, and their listeners, of the world, the kind of people who get most upset over foreign labor and drugs going into the US. Other people care, but not so much that they're obsessed with it. The man is a Machiavellian genius if it's true.

I don't think it's true, but it's so intriguing that a big part of me wants it to be true. Chances are more that this guy either isn't really so tough on gangs as he claims, or he's paranoid and has the police effectively act as his citywide bodyguards.
posted by mccarty.tim at 3:20 PM on November 5, 2009


hincandenza: You'd think the truth about Arpaio would leak out, but maybe it's only a few who are better treated while in jail and well compensated when they get out, and the rest are just unfortunate convicts who suffer for the sake of keeping up the illusion.

It's a jail, not a prison. Convicts and people awaiting trial.

This, more than anything else, stresses to me why Arpaio is scum and so is everyone who supports him.
posted by Mitrovarr at 3:28 PM on November 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


I think the deputy was following orders and even seems to be actively speaking into his radio when he gets caught. He looks like he doesn't know whether to call for back up, arrest someone or shoot them, trying to retain the illusion of being both in control and not having done anything at all wrong.

A transcript of the radio exchange should be available. In theory, anyway, but I'm sure everything's vanished and all the firewalls have been put in place so it doesn't implicate anyone higher up in the chain of command, which might backfire if there's any trace of a cover-up.

That Judge's behavior was awfully stiff....
posted by Skygazer at 4:09 PM on November 5, 2009


Oh, and I would totally buy that Arpaio is aligned with a druglord.
posted by Skygazer at 4:12 PM on November 5, 2009


I live in suburban county not far from Washington DC and Baltimore.

When a local Clear Channel winger radio station talk show host had Arpaio on as a special guest via telephone, our own county sheriff called in to drool over what a hero and patriot Arpaio is.

I don't care about the pink uniforms and the tents for the convicts, but for a guy who claims to support the Constitution of the United States of America, he's got a few things to learn about the civil liberties which are granted therein.
posted by imjustsaying at 4:22 PM on November 5, 2009


Nice thread title, btw.
posted by peppito at 4:32 PM on November 5, 2009


I was stunned at the video, and this is the first place that's given any background to what the video portrayed. Nobody from the Sheriff's Department ever read the document? I beg to differ - the video clearly shows the Sheriff's Department employee reading, first, a few lines at the protruding bottom edge of the paper, and then pulling it out more and reading more, and then pulling it out entirely and reading again. An attorney's file is privileged, end of story, everywhere, at every stage of a proceeding and beyond, and in most places attorneys, as officers of the court, aren't even subject to the search of person and/or belongings that other people entering the court undergo. "Screening" files for contraband? You can flip thru a file and see if a gun falls out without having to read one word in it.

The judge was the worst because, while the defense attorney and the others around her were focused forward on the judge, the judge faced the courtroom, and thus saw every moment of the occurrence, and didn't question it, and then tried to pretend the only problem in the courtroom was the defense attorney's emotional state. It appears the hearing took place before a different judge, who frankly should have been called as a witness, under oath, to what took place.

In many years of legal experience, I've seen "good old boy" networks of attorneys, special relationships between judges and the good old boys, and all kinds of bad judges, but I've never seen anything like this, not even hinting at it. Clearly, the constitution's been outlawed in Maricopa County.
posted by lphoenix at 4:56 PM on November 5, 2009


Oh, and I would totally buy that Arpaio is aligned with a druglord.

I wasn't aware that the alternative was a serious opinion.
posted by Doublewhiskeycokenoice at 5:06 PM on November 5, 2009


It's always stumped me why no one's taken the law into their own hands regarding this horrid cowboy, absolutely one of America's lowest ebbs in the past few decades.

Maybe his would-be murderers don't want to legitimize his rule?
posted by sebastienbailard at 5:37 PM on November 5, 2009


lphoenix: Exactly. Why the hell didn't the judge say anything while the deputy did that, and called the other guy over to take it?

She was either scared shitless or in on it.
posted by odinsdream at 5:38 PM on November 5, 2009


I can't help but imagine what would've ensued if that had been Judge Judy on the bench... it would've been awesome.
posted by Hairy Lobster at 5:47 PM on November 5, 2009 [3 favorites]


Why hasn't anyone capped Arpaio yet?

Humiliating gang members and psychos, raging a war against typically violent mexican people smugglers and just being an all round douchebag? Seems like an extremely large percentage of the criminal underworld should want this guy's head on a platter!


Honest answer: Arpaio wastes his time harassing reporters and arresting illegal immigrants. He and his officers are absolute shit at solving real crimes. Arizona is a kickass place to be if you are a drug dealer, especially if you can get white mules and runners. You will never be searched if you aren't brown because MCSO only gives a shit about arresting brown people. If I were a dealer I would absolutely make Maricopa County my HQ because of Arpaio's total incompetence.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 5:47 PM on November 5, 2009 [5 favorites]


What ever happened with this? I know that Arpaio is a particularly nasty piece of work, but are incidents like these symptomatic of a larger, pervasive disregard for laws and protections in the constitution on the part of our authorities throughout the country?
posted by Hal Mumkin at 6:49 PM on November 5, 2009


Something is wrong with that judge. Her blase attitude toward the crime that was committed right there in front of her is grounds for impeachment. It's obvious the locals won't do anything about it, that means it's a case for the Feds.

Those deputies belong behind bars, too.
posted by Jimmy Havok at 7:42 PM on November 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Surely this...
posted by maxwelton at 8:46 PM on November 5, 2009


It was pretty outrageous when the deputy started reading the attorney's documents on the table for quite a while, but I expected that from the description here. What really made my jaw drop were the comments of the judge who surely saw the whole thing: "I do want to just say for the record that the deputies in my courtroom are responsible for courtroom security and they have quite a lot of leeway to do what they think is necessary in a situation."

You must be fucking kidding me.
posted by grouse at 9:21 PM on November 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


Wow. If there were a Nobel Prize for hilariously obvious, bad TV show-like corruption...
posted by dirigibleman at 9:35 PM on November 5, 2009


Wow. The more I read, the more this town/district/whatever it is, is either a displaced Ozark mountain family-village, a RHPS, or a Jonestown cult. There is a weird thing going down in that area, something involving families and power and secrets. Ten to one it's going to be one for the history books and urban legends.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:26 PM on November 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Send in the National Guard.
posted by scatter gather at 10:31 PM on November 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


the more this town/district/whatever it is

Maricopa County, Arizona is the fourth largest county in the US. It has nearly 4 million residents, so there are several states who would barely make a ripple if they were dropped into it.
posted by Jimmy Havok at 3:32 PM on November 7, 2009 [1 favorite]


FFF, what we have going on here is a state that's nice and warm in the winter, which appeals to a lot of older, retired folks. [not age-ist] They're the ones who tend to be more conservative, have more entrenched bigotry and more in love with the idea of a "tough" sheriff giving hell to the Latinos.

Well, that and the rather large Mormon population, which tends to vote Republican.

Which is why douchebags like Arpaio get re-elected, not to mention McCain, Kyl, the nutbar half of our congressional delegation and our state lege.
posted by darkstar at 3:43 PM on November 7, 2009


Update: Officer found in contempt of court in document case
posted by phrayzee at 8:32 AM on November 18, 2009


Update: Officer found in contempt of court in document case

Too bad all he has to do is offer up a convincing apology and he's off the hook and back on the job.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:37 AM on November 18, 2009 [1 favorite]


If you had any questions about whether or not that judge is corrupt, I think this should answer it.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:34 AM on November 18, 2009


Arpaio Pissed Over Judge's Ruling that MCSO Detention Officer Must Hold Apologetic Press Conference or Go to Jail
"According to the sheriff, nobody tells his guys what to do except Sheriff Joe himself -- not even Maricopa County Superior Court judges.

This morning, a Maricopa County detention officer was found in contempt of court for taking documents out of defense attorney Joanne Cuccia's files as she was addressing the court at a sentencing hearing for her client, Antonio Lozano.

...In response, Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe got creative He ordered that as punishment, Officer Adam Stoddard hold a press conference and apologize to Cuccia by November 30. If not, he is ordered to report to jail by December 1.

That's when Joe got all pissy over someone steppin' on his exalted toes.

'My officer was doing his job, and I will not stand by and allow him to be thrown to the wolves by the courts because they feel pressure from the media on this situation,' Arpaio says in a press release. 'I decide who holds press conferences and when they are held regarding this Sheriff's Office.'

Joe pawned off any media inquiries on the County Attorney's Office -- it has yet to return our phone calls.

A few things can happen at this point:

Option A) Officer Stoddard can hold a press conference, Joe can swallow his pride, and we all move on. B) Officer Stoddard can keep the boss happy, defy the court order, and report to jail on December 1. C) The judge can bend over for the sheriff and retract the order. D) Stoddard can hold a press conference, and Joe can put out a press release saying the press conference was his idea.

We're goin' with D."
posted by ericb at 1:22 PM on November 19, 2009 [1 favorite]


A different judge than the judge that was threatened by Arapio. That judge was a female, IIRC, and when the kelpto kop was kaught, she favoured the Arapio gangster crew.

I'm sure the investigations are going to prove salacious. Which is rather sad, given that real humans were hurt in the making of this modern media spectacle.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:43 PM on November 19, 2009


And the officer, ordered to testify, has refused to apologize!
posted by five fresh fish at 12:35 AM on December 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


And now, a sick-out by court officers and a "credible" bomb threat at the Maricopa County Superior Court has disrupted proceedings.
posted by phrayzee at 10:47 AM on December 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


When was the last time we had this kind of lawlessness in the United States? Little Rock in 1957? When is a higher authority going to step in and do something about it?
posted by grouse at 11:53 AM on December 2, 2009


"A representative for the Maricopa County Association of Detention Officers, John Solano, said the high absenteeism was not a coordinated act of solidarity for detention officer Adam Stoddard, who turned himself Tuesday night in to serve a sentence for contempt. That sentence stemmed from an incident in which Stoddard removed documents from a defense attorney's during a defendant's sentencing hearing."
BULLSHIT!
posted by ericb at 12:32 PM on December 2, 2009


I wonder if Maricopa will prove to be the epicenter of mass civil disobedience. I could see the teabaggers have the gumption to do that.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:33 PM on December 2, 2009


fivefresh, I certainly hope you were being facetious, since if you weren't, then you're terminally naive.

The teabaggers love Arpaio. They'd elect him President if they could.
posted by Jimmy Havok at 7:07 PM on December 3, 2009


Yes. And Arpaio is being disobedient. And he will call for support if he is investigated or prosecuted. And then we would have a situation of civil disobedience. And there is no reason to believe that he would not succeed, as he has in past investigations, which will solely encourage further civil disobedience with the goal of "righting the wrongs" of what is allowed to be legal in America.

Arpaio could be just as much a Malcom X style lightening rod for civil unrest as any of the other talking heads. And this guy has the distinct advantage of having a fixed physical base, something solid upon which to rally. Remember the Alamo isn't about having a talk radio show: it's to do with physicality.

I'm not hugely serious about Arpaio being the flashpoint for the inevitable conflict. At some point or other, the wingnuts are going to go off the deep end. The ignorant and hateful minority is getting more and more mentally unhinged, and it is all going to end in tears. Could be Arpaio that acts as the catalyst, could be Limbaugh, could be one of the other greedy, hateful loons.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:46 PM on December 3, 2009


To clarify: not to say Arpaio and Malcom X share the same ideals or end goals, but rather the same proclivity to disobedience to the law, and acceptance of escalation of violence. Willing to use most means to get what they believe is right.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:51 PM on December 3, 2009


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