From and editorial in the Washington Post:
“THE ESSENCE of Joe Arpaio’s long reign as sheriff of Arizona’s Maricopa County, whose 4 million residents in and around Phoenix make it one of the nation’s biggest localities, was lawlessness masquerading as law enforcement. Blatant racial profiling, inhumane treatment of prisoners and contempt for federal court orders — this was the stuff on which Mr. Arpaio staked his relentlessly self-promoted reputation as “America’s toughest sheriff.”
Now Mr. Arpaio, who lost a reelection bid for a seventh term in the fall after voters tired of shelling out tens of millions of dollars in legal fees on his behalf, is facing a day of reckoning. In a trial that began Monday in federal court, Mr. Arpaio stands accused of criminal contempt of court for having thumbed his nose at a federal judge who ordered a halt to Mr. Arpaio’s traffic patrols, which singled out Hispanics on the basis of nothing more than their appearance, for immigration enforcement.
Lawyers for Mr. Arpaio, who is 85, have tried out an array of legal strategies in his defense, variously arguing that he did not understand the order , or that the order was ambiguous or invalid. His supporters argue that the entire case is a political vendetta orchestrated by holdovers from the Obama administration in the Justice Department.
Unfortunately for the sheriff, the most damning evidence against him are the words he himself uttered, unambiguously, after U.S. District Judge G. Murray Snow, in December 2011, ordered his office to halt detentions based on nothing more than suspicion that a person might be in violation of federal immigration law. “I’m still gonna do what I’m doing,” Mr. Arpaio told the media in April 2012 . “I’m still gonna arrest illegal aliens.”
The sheriff’s insolence — an open admission that he would persist in conduct the judge had ruled was discriminatory — translated into open defiance. For at least 18 months, his deputies continued to racially profile motorists for detention. Some 170 people were stopped in that period, even as Mr. Arpaio’s own lawyer at the sheriff’s department warned him to stick to enforcing the state laws he was sworn to uphold, not federal ones.”
Read the full article at the link.
Trump, Kobach, and other GOP politicos have cozied up to “Sheriff Joe” over the years. Eventually, the truth will out. Frankly, that’s why Trump, Kobach, Pence and others in the GOP are so anxious to suppress Hispanic American and other minority votes before the tide of racial justice finally turns. These guys are scared senseless of American democracy.