Print

News >> Browse Articles >> Law Enforcement News

+83

Court: Sheriff Joe Can Play Christmas Music‎

Court: Sheriff Joe Can Play Christmas Music‎

Sheriff Joe Arpaio (AP Photo)

The Washington Times via YellowBrix

December 21, 2009

Sheriff Joe Arpaio – the self-proclaimed “toughest sheriff” in America – likes Christmas music, especially “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and anything by Alvin and the Chipmunks, and apparently he thinks the 8,000 inmates inside his Phoenix jail should, too.

So it was with some glee that his Maricopa County office announced Thursday in a red-and-green press release that the “sixth and perhaps final lawsuit” brought by inmates to stop the sheriff from playing the holiday songs all day, every day, during the holidays had been dismissed in federal court.

Arizona Policing

“We keep winning these lawsuits. Inmates should stop acting like the Grinch who stole Christmas and give up wasting the court’s time with such frivolous assertions,” it read. “But chances are they’ll keep suing and we’ll keep winning.”

The latest lawsuit was filed by inmate William Lamb, who said that being forced to listen to the Christmas songs 12 hours a day was a violation of his civil and religious rights. But U.S. District Judge Roz Silver disagreed, dismissing the case and denying Lamb’s claim for $250,000 in damages.

Sheriff Arpaio catapulted to national attention when he cracked down on the thousands of illegal immigrants who swarm daily through his county; put inmates in pink jumpsuits and underwear; worked them in chain gangs; housed them in tents in the Arizona desert and fed them bologna sandwiches.

He said that his Christmas selections were multi-ethnic and culturally diverse, from all faiths and ethnicities. He told The Washington Times earlier this year that in addition to tunes by Alvin and the Chipmunks, the music included the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Bing Crosby and Doctor Demento.

At the time, he said “all people everywhere deserve a little Christmas cheer.”

Lt. Brian Lee, the sheriff’s spokesman, said the court issued a summary judgment upholding the decision to “inject the holiday spirit into the lives of those incarcerated over the holiday season in the third-largest jail system in the U.S.”

He said inmates have sued six times claiming the music was in violation of their religious rights or cruel and unusual punishment, but the court disagreed – finding no evidence of fact, so Sheriff Arpaio was entitled to the judgment as a matter of law.


+83
  • 1979_max50

    Robocop33

    over 4 years ago

    14636 Comments

    He must be doing something right as he always gets re-elected, and by double digit margins no less. Maybe other Sheriffs should listen to the people and follow suit. I hope he is in good enough health to run and win the Governorship.

  • Gods_team_max50

    IowaNinersFan

    over 4 years ago

    22164 Comments

    You go!!!!

  • 000000000000000aaaaaaaaaa_max50

    Mrbdguard

    over 4 years ago

    4612 Comments

    Amen brother Amen...Go getum Joe

  • 004_max50

    akeribear

    over 4 years ago

    2286 Comments

    Good job Joe. We as shoppers have to listen to Christmas music whenever we go to the mall or any other store no matter what are beliefs. These inmates can suck it up. Way to Go Joe.

  • Scan_max50

    bleu1240

    over 4 years ago

    312 Comments

    Rock on Joe.

PoliceLink School Finder

Save time in your search for a criminal justice degree program. Use PoliceLink's School Finder to locate schools online and in your area.

Get Info

* In the event that we cannot find a program from one of our partner schools that matches your specific area of interest, we may show schools with similar or unrelated programs.

Recent Activity

Alex_453_max30
alex82 commented on: "navylatina19", 7 minutes ago.
Photo_user_banned_big
hassan1 submitted the article: "Watch Pittsburgh Steelers vs Philadelphia Eagles Live str...", 18 minutes ago.
Photo_user_banned_big
hassan1 submitted the article: "Watch Steelers v Eagles live online NFL week 3 streaming ...", about 1 hour ago.
Photo_user_banned_big
hassan1 submitted the article: "Pittsburgh Steelers vs Philadelphia Eagles Online", about 1 hour ago.