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Sheriff Joe Under Grand Jury Investigation

Sheriff Joe Under Grand Jury Investigation

The Los Angeles Times via YellowBrix

January 08, 2010

PHOENIX — Two top county officials said Thursday night they have been subpoenaed to answer questions next week before a federal grand jury about a high-profile Arizona sheriff and his office.

In statements read by a county spokesman, Maricopa County Manager David Smith and Deputy County Manager Sandi Wilson said they met with a federal prosecutor to discuss the case and will testify Wednesday.

Wilson said the general subject of the inquiry was abuses by Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s office. Neither Wilson nor Smith offered specifics, said county spokesman Richard de Uriarte, who spoke with the two officials Thursday night.

Sheriff’s spokesman Brian Lee said Arpaio was declining to comment on reports of the investigation. “He has stated that we will conduct business as usual,” Lee said.

Sandy Raynor, a spokeswoman for the U.S attorney’s office in Phoenix, said she couldn’t confirm or deny a grand jury investigation.

Arpaio and an ally are embroiled in nasty legal disputes with county officials and judges. Two county supervisors and one county judge have been criminally charged in investigations by Arpaio and County Attorney Andrew Thomas.

Last month, Arpaio and Thomas filed a federal racketeering lawsuit against a group of county administrators, judges and attorneys, accusing them of participating in a conspiracy to hinder an investigation into a $341 million court building under construction in Phoenix and the investigation of Supervisor Don Stapley.

Arpaio is widely known for tough jail policies and pushing the bounds on local immigration efforts. He has led a dozen crime and immigration sweeps, some in heavily Latino areas.

Critics allege that some of Arpaio’s deputies racially profiled people during immigration sweeps. But Arpaio maintains that people pulled over in the sweeps were approached because deputies had probable cause to believe they had committed crimes.

He was told in March that his office is being investigated by the U.S. Department of Justice over allegations of discrimination and unconstitutional searches and seizures. Arpaio had said he believed the investigation was spurred by his immigration efforts.

Last year, Arpaio was stripped of some of his special authority to make federal immigration arrests, though he retains some federal power that allows his jail officers to speed up deportations.

A half-day after his powers were limited, he launched a crime and immigration sweep and has since continued his enforcement of state laws banning immigrant smuggling and prohibiting businesses from knowingly hiring illegal immigrants.

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  • K-9_paw_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Way to go Joe. Give 'em hell..........

  • Matt_at_speedy_dewitt_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Every Sheriff should take a lesson from Sheriff Joe's play book...stay strong and give 'em hell Sheriff Joe!

  • 6_months_076_max50


    over 4 years ago



  • 33751_1641475233664_1140304558_31795009_3342302_n_max50


    over 4 years ago


    We stand beside you Sheriff Joe

  • Dsc00079_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Sheriff Joe you are one tough SOB and that is why I appreciate what you do. Where them out Sheriff.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 4 years ago

    Sheriff Joe has been under scrutiny by the media and other officials since the beginning. He always comes out smelling like a rose, why? BECAUSE HE HAS AN OBLIGATION TO UPHOLD THE LAW. That's why he has a higher approval rate than any other politician in America. This isn't his first rodeo, nor will it be his last.

  • Lpd_patch_max50


    over 4 years ago


    We stand with you Sheriff Joe!

  • Patch


    over 4 years ago


    Gotta love sheriff Joe! I hope he comes through this crap smelling like a flower.

  • P6300003_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Sheriff Joe is the man!!!

  • 100_1019_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Keep up the good work Sheriff Joe!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 4 years ago

    Sheriff Arpaio is one of the good guys. Recidivism of offenders is much lower compaired to the rest of the country because of his efforts. Keep up the good work Sheriff.

  • Pl22-2_max50


    over 4 years ago


    I just love Sheriff Joe, he is awesome, keep doing what your doing Joe, we love you.

  • Rcsd04_max600_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Keep up the good work Sheriff Joe, you are the reason I hope to become a sheriff some day. You are one of the best, keep going and dont stop Joe. We support you 110%

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 4 years ago

    He's doing a AWESOME JOB!! more power to him and those that support him!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 4 years ago

    I'm talking secede here. I WANT AMERICA BACK!!!

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