Judge Susan R. Bolton has upheld President Donald Trump’s pardon of Joe Arpaio as almost everyone has expected. The judgment was formally validated last month. It appears that the decision did not sit well with Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey, formerly of the Phoenix New Times. The two have strongly reacted to the judge’s decision.
Arpaio is the former sheriff of Maricopa County. He was convicted for criminal contempt in July. The charge was for ignoring the order of a federal judge in relation to a racial-profiling lawsuit lodged in 2007. The former sheriff was pardoned weeks before he was supposed to be sentenced.
Arpaio was a retired Drug Enforcement Administration official. He ran and won his office in 1992 as a reform candidate. He styled himself as the toughest sheriff in America and attracted press coverage by his unorthodox methods of law enforcement. During his term, Arpaio fed rotten fruit and green bologna to inmates.
He also forced them to wear striped jumpsuits and pink underwear. The former sheriff also utilized female chain gangs for country road cleanups, and deputized volunteer “posses” and armed them to accomplish what he wants.
Larkin and Lacey have been critical of Arpaio’s unconventional actions for several years. They have relentlessly criticized the former sheriff for his scandals during his 24-year reign. The former sheriff reacted by not allowing the reporters from attending his press conferences, even threatening them with arrest.
He ignored New Times’ requests for country records and delayed their release at best. The persistent cajoling of Larkin and Lacey against Arpaio led the former sheriff to arrest the two in October 2007 using his armed operatives called Selective Enforcement Unit.
Larkin and Lacey founded Village Voice Media which publishes the New Times during the 1970 Kent State Killings and built it to become a coast-to-coast chain. The two sold the company to Voice Media Group in 2013.
The public outcry over their arrest in 2007 was so huge that the sheriff was forced to release them in less than 24 hours. Many believe that the constitutional rights of the two were violated. A long legal battle ended in the decision handed down by the Ninth Court of Appeals that said the two were arrested without probable cause. Read more: Jim Larkin | Crunchbase and Michael Lacey | Crunchbase
The recent ruling by Judge Bolton serves as the latest incident in the long-running battle between Arpaio against Larkey and Lacey. Commenting on the recent decision, Lacey said that Rex Tillerson was right because the pardon of Arpaio proves that Donald Trump is a moron. He also said that this decision shows the perfect marriage of two corrupt individuals.
Lacey also added that Arpaio advertised racism and torture and this could be proven by the number of mutilated bodies and corpses that came out of his jail.
The former New Times co-owner also lamented that this decision is a failure of the country’s justice system and ends up with contempt of court since Arpaio was not held accountable for the people who suffered during his term as sheriff.