On Monday, a U.S. district court judge found former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio guilty of criminal contempt. According to the decision, Arpaio willfully violated a federal judge’s order to stop racial profiling.
The charge originated with a 2011 court order issued by U.S. District Court Judge Murray Snow. The order required the Maricopa County sheriff to not racially profile Latinos in his office. Arpaio is reported to have disobeyed the order.
Arpaio said that any disobedience was unintentional, but Snow decided Arpaio defied the order to help win his reelection in 2012.
U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton handed down the final decision, finding Arpaio guilty of criminal contempt of court.
According to The Arizona Republic:
The sentencing phase will begin Oct. 5. Arpaio faces up to six months in confinement, a sentence equivalent to that of a misdemeanor.
On July 25, Arpaio’s wife sent out a letter asking for help in funding “Sheriff Joe’s” legal defense fees. She said the case was “politically motivated from the start,” and that the Obama Department of Justice (DOJ) under Loretta Lynch “carefully timed their charges to come out last fall — right before the election — to do maximum political damage to my husband’s re-election campaign.”
Arpaio, a supporter of President Trump, was defeated in 2016, ending his 55-year career in law enforcement. He lost to Democrat Paul Penzone, whose campaign was financed in part by George Soros. Penzone quickly changed department policies to be more lenient toward illegal immigrants, even referring to them as “guests” during a local TV interview.
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