4
| Arpaio |

Jerry Sheridan, MCSO Chief Deputy, Considers Legal Options After Slurs by Ex-Deputy Chief

^
Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

Jerry Sheridan, chief deputy for the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, is said to be contemplating his legal options following the release of an ex-deputy chief's gossip-filled book.

Sheridan didn't call New Times back after we called him for comment before printing Friday's article about the newly released book by former veteran deputy Brian Sands, but Sheriff Joe Arpaio's spokeswoman, Lisa Allen, did.

Sheridan "has contacted an attorney," Allen tells us. "He is looking to find out if there's a case here about his reputation [being] defamed."

Of particular concern to Sheridan are statements by Sands that allege apparent bigotry.

See also: -Joe Arpaio's Top Man, Jerry Sheridan, Described as a Bigot in Ex-Deputy's Book -Joe Arpaio's Deputy Says Sheriff Is Misinformed About Illegal Immigration Patrols

Sands is Arpaio's former chief of enforcement, and oversaw the sheriff's immigration sweeps and employer-sanction investigations, among other things. He retired after 30 years on the force in August of 2013, a few months after a federal judge ruled that the sheriff's office had discriminated against Hispanics.

Sheridan, also a veteran MCSO employee, was the former chief of detention at the agency until his promotion in 2011, which occurred after Sheriff Joe Arpaio fired his previous chief deputy, David Hendershott, for misconduct. Sheridan was "ethnically biased," according to Sands. "He would, from time to time, speak in derogatory terms, reference groups of people, and appeared to think he was funny." He gives the example of Sheridan making a wisecrack about a black deputy's "genes."

Allen says she's never heard Sheridan say anything like that.

"There isn't a racist bone in that man's body," she says, adding that the accusations "come out of left field."

The book's statements about Sheridan expressing support for Irish Republican Army leader Bobby Sands, for instance, was a mischaracterization of a joke between them, Allen says.

The sheriff's spokeswoman blasted back at Sands' depictions in the book of the sheriff and his top people.

"If you can judge a book by its cover, this book is as juvenile and unprofessional and silly as the cover itself," she says."Of all of the people he criticized, we couldn't remember anytime where he stood up and said absolutely not, this is wrong, we're going about it the wrong way. He didn't do it about sex crimes, the birther investigation... illegal immigration. Now to say all of us are incompetent, corrupt, it's mind-boggling,"

Got a tip? Send it to: Ray Stern.

Follow Valley Fever on Twitter at @ValleyFeverPHX. Follow Ray Stern on Twitter at @RayStern.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.