Arizona Lawyers Ask For Dismissal in Arpaio Case
The attorneys for Joe Arpaio the Sheriff for Maricopa County in Arizona asked a judge in federal court on Friday to dismiss the lawsuit that alleges his office participated in patterned discrimination against Hispanics in the immigration patrols that have become famous under his leadership, and maintained a culture of complete disregard for the most basic of constitutional rights.
The motion from attorneys for Arpaio came close to a month after the U.S. Department of Justice filed its lawsuit accusing his office of carrying out racial profiling and punishing jail inmates of Hispanic descent for speaking in Spanish.
The sheriff is also alleged to have launched immigration patrols that were based upon letters from citizens who complained about dark skinned people congregating in specific areas and talking in Spanish, but never reported that an actual crime had taken place.
All of the charges have been denied by the sheriff and he has said the lawsuit was politically motivated by the Obama administration in an attempt to win votes from the Hispanics. He insists the Department of Justice needs to provide facts to backup its allegations.
Arpaio’s attorneys said his office should be taken off the lawsuit as a defendant since it is an entity that is nonjural and cannot be sued or sue others. The motion also stated that the DOJ did not back its claims with enough statistical evidence and information. Officials from the DOJ said in a letter in December of 2011 to Arpaio that those details had been provided to his office. The DOJ filed the lawsuit following a breakdown of settlement talks between the two in April. The sheriff, the DOJ says, refused to accept a court-appointed monitor to help enforce a possible agreement.