Sandy Hook

Sandy Hook

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

America's "Toughest" Sheriff One Mean Machine

Writer Aura Bogado spent five months investigating how Phoenix Sheriff Joe Arpaio's tactics affected Latino residents who make up 31 percent of Maricopa County's population. She interviewed citizens, legal immigrants and undocumented residents about encounters with deputies and police. "It got to the point where I raced home in a panic one morning after heading out for a jog without ID—what if a deputy, seeing a Latina running down the street, decided to haul me in?"

Arpaio doesn't count sheep at night. He counts Latinos and three Latinos are three Latinos too many. His ego is bigger than his paunch, so even after a restless night's sleep with nightmares of brown men refusing to shine his patrol car, he still has the energy to do a cheap imitation of John Wayne for the media.

But Arpaio is no Grade B actor in a Grade B movie playing the part of the bad guy. He is the real thing - a malicious brute. He uses chain gangs, deliberately humiliates inmates by forcing them to wear pink underwear, houses prisoners in tents with temperatures of over 110 degrees,  and, he makes sure medical care is only a dream.

To say that Arpaio is obsessed with immigration is to say that a ballet dancer is obsessed with staying fit and trim.

Before SB 1070, there was Arizona's "coyote statute," which made it a felony to smuggle people for profit in the state. Just like a western of days gone by, Arpaio organized posses of citizens and lawmen to roundup undocumented immigrants. "I'm not going to turn these people over to federal authorities so they can have a free ride back to Mexico," he told the Washington Times. "I'll give them a free ride to my jail."

Besides being innately cruel, the sheriff is astonishing arrogant.
Last fall, without explanation, the Department of Homeland Security rescinded Arpaio's authority to arrest people under section 287(g)—although deputies can still check the immigration status of people arriving at the jails. In anticipation of the crackdown, Arpaio held a press conference. "We have arrested 1,600 illegals that have not committed any crime other than being here illegally," he boasted. "The secret is, we're still going to do the same thing—we have the state laws, and by the way, we'll still enforce the federal laws without the oversight, the policy, the restrictions that they put on us." 
Bogado tells the story of Native Americans who told her that they were often mistaken for Latinos. Alex, not his real name, was at a Circle K while his parents waited outside.
He ran out when he heard a group of Arpaio's deputies yelling at them to produce their papers. Then, Alex said, they demanded to see his ID, too, explaining, "The law says everyone here has to be legal."
Alex is a third generation US citizen.

Then there was Celia Alejandra Alvarez, who told Bogado that sheriff's deputies broke her jaw when they raided the landscaping company where she worked.
Álvarez said she was denied adequate medical care during her three-month detention—a common complaint that has been the subject of hundreds of lawsuits against Arpaio. Even after surgery, she added, her jaw still isn't back to normal—during our interview she paused periodically to readjust it. (In 2008, the National Commission on Correctional Health Care yanked (PDF) Maricopa County's accreditation, saying its jails failed to meet national standards.)
Bogado tells about "Maruillo,"  a construction worker who has lived in this country without papers for 21 years. His two children are US citizens.
He said his family was camping at a lake over the Fourth of July weekend in 2008, when a fellow camper started yelling something about "too many Mexicans" and called the sheriff's office. The deputies, Maurilio and his wife told me, threw him down in the presence of his six-year-old son and shoved his face into the ground. They then yanked his head up by his hair and pepper-sprayed him as they cuffed him. After a few weeks at Durango, he was deported—and immediately headed to the desert to walk back north.
Perhaps the most gut-wrenching story of all is the one about David de la Fuente who was arrested for driving with a fake licence and no documents. He was hauled off to Arpaio's notorious Durango Jail where he was charged with a fake ID. A short month later de la Fuente was dead.

When he arrived at Durango, de la Fuente became ill and began deteriorating rapidly. He told his cousin and sisters that "the guards kept dragging him back and forth between the prison yard (where temperatures reached 107 degrees) and the frigid jail—leaving him queasy and disoriented."
He also complained of severe chest pains, but fearing the guards might retaliate, told his family not to press the authorities about his condition. Eventually, de la Fuente was hauled before a judge, who fined him and put him on probation for giving an alias to the police. After three weeks in custody, he was turned over to federal immigration authorities, who delivered him the next day to Nogales, Mexico, about 700 miles north of his hometown. By that time, he was gravely ill.
He arrived in Colonia Emilio Carranza three days later, stumbling and barely able to speak. His family got him to the hospital, where he was diagnosed with acute pneumonia. Based on the stage of his illness, the doctors determined that de la Fuente had contracted it about 15 days earlier—roughly a week into his jail stay—according to medical paperwork and an interview with the hospital director. The doctors did what they could, but de la Fuente was too far gone. His cousins and a sister stood vigil as he dwindled and eventually fell into a coma. He was pronounced dead on June 23—exactly four weeks after the traffic stop.
De la Fuente's cousin, Norberto Alvarado Santana, fights tears and stares out into the vast horizon near his cousin's grave.
This past September, during my visit to Colonia Emilio Carranza, Norberto Alvarado Santana said littleas he showed me his cousin's grave, in a humble cemetery adorned with plastic flowers and Virgen de Guadalupe figurines. A stout, reserved man, he measured his words cautiously before finally breaking the silence. "There's a word for what happened to my cousin David," he said. "It's homicide."


  1. I live, and have a business in Maricopa county.
    Every one knows that Joe is a racist.
    This last Sunday he was along the border attending a tea party.
    Supposedly one of the Mexican cartels has a hit out on him. 1 million $.
    He refuses to turn over financial papers to the county.
    The feds are investigation this clown.
    He had one of his raids in the area where our store is about 2 years ago. He had his deputies, and posse go to peoples houses and knock on their doors. People sat inside with the lights turned off, crying and waiting for them to leave.
    Does this remind you of a different era in Europe?
    People should know that he gets a lot of our tax payer money for every cot that he fills in his 110 degree tent city.

  2. Heh, heh, heh, heh, heh .... bring's back ole memories Ms.Leslie ... I remember ole Arpaio from several year's back, when he started his pink boxer's punishment! :) An ole buddy had got caught running (contraband) in that neck of the wood's (I only got busted in Texas, but beat my case as far as transport/ delivery) and he hated it over there! :) Yep ... ole Arpaio is a hard guy, rest assured. Year's back I frequented Northern Mexico and running from the border to Houston, San Antone, Dallas ... just a part time gig ... once or twice a month. I was offered also at the time to run human's/ wetback's, but never liked dealing in human, because it's a hard haul, considering, ventilation, water/ food, waste disposal's and sanitation need's etc ... and it's bulky and hazardous ... if I recall back then .. it was about $300 per head .. you worked a 2/3 man crew, so your transport is alway's in motion. Most are already beyond the 50 mile border point when you pick them up ... there is a point 50 mile's north of the border that had the most heat, being INS, DEA, BP, etc ... so you pick your load in America actually and bring them to cities, most crossed foot to their drop point, today they carry backpack's with dope (heroin/ cocaine to pay their way ... and so dealer/ distributor's use them cheap, and also as peg bust to deter major haul's at other point's, letting them get busted after they fed them false info, so they area diversion for larger load's and supply false info they dont even know was false, created by the cartel's to specifiaccly get false info to intell source's. Marijuana is also bulky ... the best pay was in cocaine/ heroin. But back to these border state/ town cop's ... American people dont even get an accurate picture of what goes down ... it is all corrupt to a degree, and big business, even those like the sheriff himself ... heh, heh, heh, heh, heh ... dont want to actually get rid of illegal's ... just to have more control, no one TRUELY want's this business to go away. These illegal's are a commodity, even Mexico dont want it to stop ... it's billion's to their economy as well as billion's of unclaimed taxes to our economy and over inflated service's and cost's ... the only victim's actually are the wetback's ... believe me ... they are probably the most used segment of modern America, even Mexicano Americano's use them like red headed step children. There is so much under the table wheelin and dealin going on .. I would have to write a book to put it all down! :) man oh man .... even child sex traffic is huge, and many are even taken out of America after they get here and transported to land's abroad. But anywayz ... well put together piece indeed Ms.Leslie! Just wanted to add a couple thought's, since it took me down memory lane. :)

  3. One more point please ... Reality Zone speaking of the buck's for bunk's (cot's filled) ... this is one of the biggest businesses of border state's ... we are getting milked of our tax dollar's tremendously as well ...RZ hit the nail on the head there!

  4. This effen guy is dirty and every one knows it.

    I would love to see him frog marched to the court house.

  5. RZ: This guy really is running a police state. I see he just lost a lawsuit he filed trying to take over health care at his concentration camp. And as you indicated he has all kinds of suits against him by the FBI and DOJ for civil rights violations. Seems to me some international humane org. would step in. I think he's being sued for an unexplained missing of $41,000.

    RC: Maybe certain elements of Mexico don't want to see the flow of illegals stop but I think the majority who come here do so for a better life. I have no doubt the wealthy Americans are exploiting the hell out of them for financial reasons. That's one reason I'm puzzled why they pushed for this law.

    Since precedent has been set in Little Rock and Tuscaloosa I also wonder why the National Guard hasn't been sent in.

  6. Arpaio and his Kannibal Kennel Klan have gone after, investigated, harassed, Council members, and other county officials because he had a score to settle.
    Many are now in the process of suing him and the county because of it.

    He is an egomaniac who believes he is untouchable. This is what will nail him.

    His own ego.

  7. The way I see it Leslie, is politic's, knowing that trying to pass this through wont work anywayz as is ... they need that republican vote, they have been losing so much. And this is very complex of all that is involved. It already been hurting business in Arizona... because so many Mexicano's been leaving to go to other state's and some back to Mexico out of fear of having their familia's broke up, being temporarily incarcerated and other legal complication's, to where entire strip mall's of retailer's even closed their door's because of loss of revenue's. As I posted in my earlier posting's ... I am not against enforcing law's, this AZ thing was simply a stunt ... the law's for immigration are already covered by federal law, they didnt need any further, and focused on this season behind politic's and trying to put the President in a bind with all the other issue's their shoving on the table. Actually I wrote quite a bit about these stunt's that would be pulled before the President even took office, and like clockwork, their all falling in place. I point this out, is because as I have posted ... the Arizona law couldnt work if you look closely at it ... it can only tie up the federal court's in one lawsuit after another. This law/ bill was simply window dressing, as all the other well engineered crap, even the immigrant's are not even making any significant impact on the lower employment as some think ... this is also a scamjob and diversion ... heh, heh, heh, heh, heh ... the corporate sponsored two million or so with degree's that are brought in from abroad annually are more of a threat for that matter, as far as job's, but you wont hear a peep about that. This is all designed strictly to get the herd's panties in a bind is all.

  8. RC:
    Well said.
    I am one of those retailers in a Hispanic area that you talked about.
    I could go on for hours about this.
    You have a very good take on what is going on here.

  9. This is the reality and much can be learned here. RZ has clued me in on many things. This reporter is writing the truth. I saw the Feds in action north of Nogales at the first of the year and am still bothered by it. I'm not going anywhere close to that area. The tin horn imbecile has been doing this shit for years and ignores when told to do something. He's getting worse and the picture tells it all. The fucker knows nothing is going to happen that's why he does it. Just like the Bush's knew. Why can't people get this.

  10. When I left Nashville in the early 60s there wasn't a single Latino in this town. Now they make up a huge percentage of the population. Last year some ignorant a-hole tried to get an English only amendment passed. Thank God it failed but I can see an Arizona type bill being passed.


    I do not know if I have shown you guys this.
    Or just google [Constitution Free Zone].
    It is not what it sounds like.

    Even as an American citizen, you are basically a non person.

  12. Nice post Leslie, and RZ and RC you guys both ran down your part with understanding of the issue and empathy. Nothing I can add, other than the humiliation and the fear are horrible.I can only imagine what it's like for the undocumented, in my case I'm a citizen and barring a "Born in East LA" scenario ultimately nothing's gonna happen to me. When the bastards drag in your family it's worse.
    I'm staying the hell away from Arizona.

  13. My dad never told me a whole lot worth knowing, but he did tell me once that just because people are in jail doesn't mean they should be tortured like animals.

    I overheard a travel agent in a local starbucks telling someone that he couldn't recommend his customers go anywhere near Arizona...he said "it's too dangerous." Yep, that 'bout sums it up.

  14. Do any of these people like Joe Arpaio, Newt, and the entire crew at Fox Noise realize that all this crap they are spewing will come back to them one day? Never mind, stupid question.

  15. RZ: Bookmarked it.

    Oso: The sad ramification of boycotting is that the very people we want to help will be hurt.

    Bee: It's a powder keg about to go I'm afraid. A lot of people will be hurt but not the Ape's posse - you can bet on that.

    Beach: If they had the intelligence to figure that out, they'd act like they had some sense. But you know that.

  16. Tnlib, Rachel Maddow did a couple of excellent pieces on this, tying up Governor Brewer and two of her high up in the admin stooges being involved with the private correctional facilites that house the immigrants. It makes them a lot of money in these private prisons. At one point they tried to privatize all of the state prisons. I think is is 5 out of the 15 they have in the state are privatized and they make a lot of money from the feds. This law had already been vetoed by then Gov Napolitano. When Brewer got the job after Napolitano had been tagged for her current position Russell Pearce, who gets a lot of donations from these prisons, he knew he had an ally in Brewer. The inmates that escaped are from one of the private prisons. these segments are really worth a watch from Mz Maddow, who happened to win a Walter Cronkite award today for her journalism skills.

  17. Considering what Arizona has for a governor, there's little chance Arpaio will be brought down anytime soon. Federal authorities should keep a close eye on him for things like graft and tax evasion, either of which would figure.

    I read some years ago many in his county look on Arpaio as a hero. Some hero.

  18. Another thing I would like to point out, so that I am straight on this, as far as my view's. Unlike some folk's, I have no business condemning folk's who capitalize off illegal immigration in some way. I know so much about this only because I was as crooked as those folk's ya'll complain about. Some American's would tar and feather me to be honest, because I have gave illegal's place's to stay and helped them escape the law's, and sure as Hell year's ago sold them so much phoney documentation, have moved so many drug's into this country as far as cocaine mostly is concerned, was a hard addict myself in those year's, simple because my habit was cost free, even when crack first started, I was considered by some as a "chef" and taught so many how to make/cook "crack" up,which fucked up our society, as well as having a different gal every visit in Mexico, I was no saint or patriot at all ... just a guy that took advantage of everything I could to make a buck frankly. No ... I never felt any remorse or sad about anything I done ... when you do that kind of shit, you cant man, it will eat you up psychologically ... it is what it is, plain and simple ... what I didnt do ... someone else would, is how I seen it. I just want to be straight up here, and not be pretentious as if I actually examined any cases, or was out to help folk's or such, my angle's were strictly motivated by money ya'll ... just like all these crook's above in these stories.

    Thank You .....

  19. DARLENE sent the following comment via email. (I don't know why she's having trouble posting her comments here. If anyone has any ideas, please advise. I think she has a Mac.) Here's what she has to say:

    Arpaio is a disgrace and is giving Arizona a very bad name. I simply cannot understand why he hasn't been arrested and put in prison for the inhumane treatment he metes out to the prisoners. He is a sadist and is a bigger criminal than any of those he puts in his tent city.

    It is true that Pearce and Brewer have ties to the private prisons here. We should never privatize prisons, schools or social security. You can see the terrible results when we do.

    I am so sick for my state and think that we are being tarred with a big black brush, just like Arkansas was during the Civil Rights time.

    Please, those of you who are not familiar with Arizona know that the bulk of Tucsonans do not feel this way. The violence is exaggerated. Crime has actually gone down. Yes, there are murders but they are all gang related and the ordinary citizen is in no more danger here than anywhere else. Jan Brewer and Russell Pearce want you to be very afraid. They deliberately foster the fear and image for pollitical gain.

  20. Jess: I just have Comcast basic cable which only carries Fox, so I'm always glad to get a head's up on a Maddow show.

    SW: Oh, he's being watched all-right and sued. He does have his followers - they're mostly skinheads.

    RC: What's wrong with admitting it was wrong? It's good for the soul even if you don't convince anyone of that.

  21. tnlib, you can watch her full show online the next day if you wanted to. I watch her everyday after KO for my sanity. I'm hoping DoJ is making an airtight case and that is why they are being all quiet about what they are doing as far as Holy Joe.

  22. Good Evening Ms. Leslie!

    Unfortunately as stupid as this will sound ... I dont understand the question (some thing's leslie, I'm not very sharp on,I reckon) or even know what would be an honest/ straight balanced answer to it is all. I can tell you that I never had any problemo with accepting consequences or doing my jail time ever for anything I do, never once in my life, have I asked for mercy, forgiveness or sympathy, or anything like love or compassion to be shown toward's me, or have an excuse or scapegoat for my action's. If that may help at all in some kind of answer(?) But it is a view I appreciate you sharing.

    Goodnight Ms. Leslie ....

  23. The guy is a Nazi. And he hangs out with Nazis. The swastika-wearing, goose-stepping kind.

    I'm not kidding; do a search on "Arpaio" on my rag, and you'll see it for yourself.

  24. RC: in your previous comment you wrote:

    "I never felt any remorse or sad about anything I done . . . "

    My response: "What's wrong with admitting it was wrong?"

    I think in a way - by describing your experiences on your blog and in your comments - you are admitting you were wrong. More importantly, you've also said several times that you've always accepted the consequences which is admirable.

    This is a little different from "feeling remorse," however - and that is what I should have addressed. So, I guess my question is - and should have been - are you saying you really never felt remorse for anything you did no matter how much it may have hurt someone? I'll be honest - I just can't imagine never regretting or feeling sad over something I've done that was wrong, especially when it hurt others.

    JR: He's truly a thug - just like the Nazis.

  25. I just done a lengthy comment, only to be told my request didnt go through, blogger problem or such, so I will try again. Bear with me please Leslie, and I'll try to make it simple.

    The right/ wrong issue is so difficult, because what's right/ wrong is determined by so many factor's, if you look throughout history, and even many folk's who may do wrong see their action's as right, or vice versa, if that make's any sense. I had done thing's that are illegal, I aided many illegal's for instance, and even made profit off it, I have participated in illegal drug activities or manufacturing and transporting, I had stolen not from a person ever, but from a large corporation as example, and even a large mega million church, I have posted on this, and am open about it. Of course I have feeling's like anyone and feel bad if I feel I wronged someone. I have value's like anyone else, just not any popular title or religion to claim. I dont go out and harm people physically, murder, rape, mutilate and such, it is not me. What I done may be wrong by law, yes, I am not the poster child for the great American guy. But I do have feeling's and care about folk's, especially those close to me and are the oddball's that are trampled through our pop culture system. I cant feel , say, bad and wrong about many thing's I done, and there wouldnt be any point that would benefit anyone.There are ton's of thing's that are done by those who are all loved, respected, and considered "right" in our society, yet we pass it off, and even praise some, who have wronged million's of folk's, "but" they are in power, they have the most money to put their view's and legislation forth, and their agenda's, and we are taught they are "right", but some of us feel those they harm and hurt. I have feeling's Leslie, and even "love" ... Hell girl ... I never even gave a girlfriend a hard time for that matter, I never once even spanked any of my 3 daughter's, or raised an attitude with them, or jumped anyone, or even went after someone who didnt come at me first, or even steal from an individual EVER in my life. Am I "wrong" on some of what I done ... by law's and standard's "yes". If that is a better answer I hope ... I am not very good at explaining this sort of thing I reckon.

  26. Also Leslie, I have alway's told young folk's of the hazard's of addiction, I know too well, and have stressed to do themselves a favour, for their sake, and not let it happen to them. Was I wrong for teaching small dealer's how to manufacture and cook drug's? It was wrong,I may not have seen it how I do now 25 year's later though. I posted on these pharma giant's that push these psyche drug's on million's of children Leslie, the commercial's and our higher up's in society tell us it's for their "good", yet have no research on the effect's long term , many of the children are from moderate income background's and foster children, and the government kick back's are enormous in revenue's, and these kid's are so f'd up mentally, if you want truth. It is ignored by so many, and society is alway's told, it is for their "good" and "right". We have 17/ 18 year old kid's from low income background's join the military, simply to get a college education, we put them in training, have them listen to hardcore music and chant "kill, kill, kill", this, yes, is a part of the training. We send them off to battle, and tell them they are doing it to keep our people free, and that it is the "right" thing, and all about people and freeing the oppressed, and it is "right". Kid's in France for instance no matter how poor, can get a free college education without having to put their life on the line, or go into semi bankruptcy by their mid 20's on inflated loan's. A woman in a christian church 400 year's ago would be burned at the stake for wearing a pantsuit, it was "right" by their standard's. before 1970 or so in the USA, it was "wrong" and unacceptable to mix in marriage and illegal, yet most felt it was "right". There is a delicate area on some thing's.

  27. RC: We've really moved far afield of the subject and I think I've unintentionally made you feel a little defensive, so I think we need to get back on track, okay?

  28. Look ... I am not trying to offend anyone, okay. You asked me a question, I tried in all sincerity to be honest. I done the best I could, I have NOT displayed any anger or have NOT tried to take anything out of context or off track or whatever else. I am sincerly trying to be as fair as possible here.

  29. For many years, until she was no longer able to care for herself, Bilbo has been a resident of Sun City, and Maricopa County. Much to Frodo's chagrin, she feels that Arpaio is a protector. He is, in her opinion, trying to get rid of the "illegals" who weren't so prevalent when she and Frodo's father first moved to the "Valley of the Sun."
    Frodo has learned that everyone appearing to be Hispanic meets Bilbo's definition of "illegal."
    Bilbo, it seems, is merely mimicking what she once said about those of a darker hue. So, unfortunately is Arpaio.

  30. Frodo:
    Our store is with in spittin distance of Sun City.
    You are correct, they are the ones that keep voting Joe back into power.
    I think his days may be numbered.
    Every one knows this guy is dirty. And the Feds are after him hard this time around.
    It is a Klan mentality.

  31. RC, my friend. No one has accused you of offending anyone or of anything else for that matter. I doubt seriously if I'm the only one around here who respects your brain power and what you've done with your life.

    Frodo: You take a person who was prejudiced from birth and add it to the same person who is acquiring all the additional fears that come with aging, you get one scared shitless person. And Arpaio knows how to play into these fears and he loves the sense of power it gives him.

    RZ: I hope you're right. I think it's pretty disgusting that he's been able to go on as long as he has, but he isn't the first tyrant in this country who's been able to do so.

  32. Thank You Leslie ... I just didnt want to do so either .. I'm 54 year's old ... far too old to be trying to raise Hell. The only reason I brought any of this up is because when Mr.Oso complimented RZ and I on our insight, empathy and such ... I appreciated it, however, I didnt want to be pretentious like a "phoney" and take credit for my insight as if I was some guy out trying to impress someone as some kind of "good guy" with my insight ... I just wanted to set the slate straight, that I WAS NOT some "good guy", and dont deserve any credit actually, but instead a law breaker, who was out to make a buck. But thanx Leslie for your understanding.

  33. Thanks, RC. Didn't think that was a halo I saw over your head. ; )

  34. Oso: At last someone else who has seen and enjoyed "Born in East L.A."