There's something that's just so priceless about Sheriff Joe Arpaio having to thank the Mexican authorities for helping return an inmate who escaped from one of his jails months ago.
From his general immigration-enforcement policies and the multiple racial-profiling lawsuits against him to specific comments, like the time he urged a boycott of Mexico or when he referred to Mexican migrants as "dirty" -- it's just damn priceless.
-Joe Arpaio Escapee Rocky Marquez Arrested in Mexico, After Second Jail Escape
-Joe Arpaio on Mexican Migrants: "They're All Dirty"
-Joe Arpaio Calls for Boycott of Mexico
-Joe Arpaio Admits He Busted Mexicans to "Spite" Critics
-Joe Arpaio on Glenn Beck Re: Mexican Migrants, "They Like to Fight Each Other"
Sure, Arpaio will point to the days that dinosaurs roamed the Earth, when he had some sort of relationship with Mexican authorities, when he worked for the agency that would later be named the Drug Enforcement Administration.
But just soak in the U.S. Marshals Service press release that quotes Arpaio thanking everyone for helping return inmate Rocky Marquez, who essentially walked out of one of Arpaio's jails in May.
"Rocky Marquez escaped from two jails using an unusual ruse. But thanks to the cooperative efforts of the U.S. Marshals Service, my office and Mexican authorities, he is back in custody," Arpaio says in his canned statement. "Upon his arrival, Marquez will be placed in 23-hour lockdown to prevent any future escape attempts. As someone who worked in Mexico years ago as a federal drug enforcement official, I certainly appreciate the help of the Mexican authorities."
In May, Marquez somehow persuaded another inmate to switch identities with him, as this inmate had his bond posted and was all set to walk out the door himself -- legally.
Marquez -- who was still awaiting trial, and had no release date in sight -- switched ID wristbands with the other inmate, and while the wristbands have pictures, an MCSO spokesman told New Times that they looked similar.
Marquez then must have then the other inmate's date of birth and other random personal information to the officer at the exit door to convince him that he was the other guy.
In the end, Marquez walked right out the door and wasn't seen for months.
The U.S. Marshals Service eventually tracked down Marquez to the Detroit area in January, and while Marquez was in the custody of authorities in Wayne County, Michigan -- waiting to be extradited back to Maricopa County -- he pulled the same gag he'd pulled on Arpaio's boys.
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This time, the Marshals Service and Mexican authorities tracked down Marquez to a "city center apartment in Hermosillo, Sonora."
The Marshals Service says Marquez was deported from Mexico back to the United States yesterday.
Now that Arpaio has his inmate back, let's see how long they can keep him this time.
Back in Maricopa County, Marquez had been in the jail since September 2010, facing charges of perjury, forgery, witness tampering, DUI, misconduct involving weapons, and leaving the scene of an accident.