Saturday, September 26, 2009
Sheriff Joe Fights Back
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio seems to be getting a little tired of being under attack by the Arizona Republic and instead of surrendering to those that by ink by the barrel, he has decided to take the bull by the horns and wrote a Special to the Republic article fighting back.
What follows is Sheriff Joe's Special to the Republic.
The real witch hunt is vs. Sheriff's Office
by Joe Arpaio - Sept. 26, 2009 12:00 AM
Special for the Republic
The Arizona Republic's editorial on Wednesday suggests that the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office should be removed from the investigation of Don Stapley because of a political dispute between the Board of Supervisors member and myself ("Sheriff must be removed from Stapley case").
As usual, the paper's Editorial Board fails to mention some very pertinent points that run contrary to their assertions.
First, the Maricopa County Anti-Corruption Enforcement Unit was started by County Attorney Andrew Thomas and me in 2007 with the aim of fighting political corruption and white-collar crime.
It is the duty of both offices to follow up on any and all leads pointing to the possibility of such crimes.
Turning their backs on information out of political favor to a fellow elected official would be tantamount to dereliction of duty.
Additionally, our offices are not the only law enforcement agencies to investigate elected officials.
Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard, a Democrat and apparent darling of The Arizona Republic Editorial Board, over the years has also investigated several of Arizona's elected Republican officials for various crimes.
Goddard's investigations often were not earth-shaking. Charges were minor, many were reduced, and still other cases were found not guilty. Why doesn't The Arizona Republic shame Goddard for his poor record as it so willingly does County Attorney Thomas and me?
The newspaper also makes the claim in its editorial that I only go after my political enemies, such as County Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox, former county schools Superintendent Sandra Dowling, Stapley and Goddard.
The fact of the matter is this: None of these officials were my adversaries when the investigations against them launched. To say that each one was a friend of mine would go too far; it's true, because in politics, a person has no friends. But they were by no means my enemies.
The paper also makes the claim that my deputies went after Dowling on a Sunday morning, replete with armored SWAT team members and three helicopters. The search warrant was executed on a Wednesday evening, not a Sunday morning; there were no armored SWAT members present and no sheriff's helicopters were called to the scene. The fact is that the Dowling case was indicted by Goddard, with the final decision being made by prosecutors. It was not my doing.
The paper constantly criticizes me for orchestrating political witch hunts, and yet it fails to write about what a huge political witch hunt is now going on against me. The Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice are investigating me and my office. Why? Because politically they disagree with how I enforce illegal-immigration and corruption laws in Maricopa County.
The Arizona Republic has joined forces in the witch hunt and has printed numerous misleading headlines, editorial commentaries and negative news articles relating to illegal-immigration and corruption cases.
What's good for the goose is good for the gander, except at The Arizona Republic, where writers and editors always make me out as the evil villain of Maricopa County. They have done this now for 17 years, and sadly, there is no end in sight.
Joe Arpaio is sheriff of Maricopa County