J. Edgar Arpaio

Sheriff Joe's fashioning himself after the late FBI director, only (we think) without the women's underwear

The insider said Arpaio instigated the controversy knowing it would generate publicity that would further his well-groomed image as a bad ass. After slapping Carefree silly, what small-town mayor relying on the MCSO would run the risk of leaving citizens without police protection by criticizing the combative geezer in the future?

Over the summer, Carefree investigated whether it could afford to operate its own police force and concluded it would cost far more than its annual $360,000 contract with MCSO.

Carefree mayor Morgan's now trying to slither back into Arpaio's good graces, literally begging the sheriff to keep his deputies in town. Which, of course, Joe's happy to do because there's no way he would ever give up a lucrative contract to provide half-assed police services to the community.

An Elvis impersonator with Joe at his roast. The real Presley toured FBI headquarters in 1970, but Arpaio's mentor, Hoover, wouldn't meet with the King.
An Elvis impersonator with Joe at his roast. The real Presley toured FBI headquarters in 1970, but Arpaio's mentor, Hoover, wouldn't meet with the King.

Here's what I mean by slither. In an effort to further stroke Arpaio's fragile ego, Morgan decreed that all complaints about the sheriff's office must be relayed through Town Marshal Matthew Ecker, rather than discussed at town council meetings attended by the public and the press.

Just to make sure there's no possibility that anyone in Carefree will have the opportunity to criticize the sheriff, Morgan also eliminated the sheriff's office's monthly report on its contracted activities in town from the council's agenda.

Arpaio's living proof that the Arizona Constitution needs to be changed to make the office of county sheriff no longer an elected position.

It's dangerous to mix political power with law enforcement and the operation of jails. It's too easy for egomaniacs like Arpaio to get elected and then abuse their police powers to cower any future political opposition.

It's time to strip politics from the office of sheriff and turn over the position to a law enforcement professional who's accountable to the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors. I'm saying that the supes should be appointing the sheriff, something that even Arpaio pretended to favor when he was first running for office.

A monumental screw-up by the Maricopa County Elections Department will be the target of legislative hearings early next year.

State Senator Jack Harper informed me he will hold hearings about the September 2004 District 20 Republican primary recount in which 489 new votes inexplicably appeared. The sudden appearance of the additional votes changed the outcome of the election.

"I think there may be some negligence on the county's part," said Harper, who's chairman of the Government Accountability and Reform Committee.

Harper, a second-term Republican from Surprise, said he's particularly upset over the county's failure to require a representative of Elections Systems & Software, Inc. to appear in court to explain why there was such a wide variation in the total number of votes. Elections Systems' optical-scanner voting machines detected the variance between the primary and recount.

The county deliberately took steps to make sure Elections Systems employee Tina Polich wasn't served with a subpoena to appear in court to explain how the machines could've had such a wide variation in tabulating votes ("All Bark and No Bite," July 14, 2005). Although she's employed by the private company, Polich keeps an office in the elections department.

Polich's absence from a one-day hearing before Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Eddward Ballinger on September 23, 2004 to certify the results of the recount allowed Elections Systems to cover up evidence that there may have been a malfunction of a voting machine during the District 20 recount.

Polich later told investigators from the County Attorney's Office "that there could have been a malfunction with the machine," which resulted in the 18.3 percent increase in the number of early ballots during the recount.

Senator Harper said the county's contract with Elections Systems requires the company to appear in court if questions arise over the performance of voting machines. He said evidence now shows that the county actually helped the firm prevent any court appearance from happening.

"There's pretty damning evidence that the county allowed ES&S not to fulfill the terms of its contract," Harper says.

I applaud Harper for stepping up the pressure on county elections officials. I hope he gets to the bottom of a mess that's undermining the public's already flagging faith that elections can be fairly and accurately conducted in this county.

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i hate to butt in here but i am a disrupter from weigh back,, and i talk way to much but true and faithful i am a firm believer in liberty and let it be known if joe can protect me while i destroy liberty tax office the kingdom will rightfully be his.... thanks to be god


The ES&S story is all anyone needs to know about how that thug you have for a sheriff keeps getting elected despite costing the county over 43 millions in wrongful death and false imprisonment judgments agaist him and hid badged and sometimes uniformed goon squad. There certainly are some real dumb asses in the county who would vote for a wooden dummy if it just kept repeating, "I'm the toughest sheriff(he actually is, he's made of wood without any brains installed) in America," over and over. But there are not enough of them to reelect the thug running roughshod over the constitutions of both Arizona and the United States. Unfortunately it will probably take a full scale federal investigation to bring the bloated beast of a sheriff to court followed his well earned retirement in a federal penitentiary. It can't come soon enough for the citizens and visitors to Maricopa County.

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