Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon says America's self-proclaimed "toughest sheriff" has agreed to keep his chain gangs away from the Major League Baseball All-Star Game tomorrow night at Chase Field.
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, you may recall, said last month he planned to roll out the chain gang in response to anti-SB 1070 protesters expected at the game.
Now, it appears, he's backing down.
Gordon appeared on National Public Radio's Tell Me More this morning and told host Michel Martin: "Our chief of police spoke to the assistant sheriff last night and the sheriff through his assistant chief acknowledged what he will do, if he does anything with chain gangs, will be do it away from the heart of the baseball game and downtown and do his own thing away where it will be safe and really not take away from the great All-Star game that is here."
Listen to Gordon call the sheriff's chain gangs "unconscionable" here.
Last month, Arpaio said "If [protesters] can be [at the game], why can't my female chain gang be there as a public service?"
Read about Arpaio's All-Star chain gang/publicity stunt here.
Arpaio announced earlier today that he would be making a "major announcement" concerning the use of his DUI/illegal immigration chain gang during the All-Star Game later this afternoon.
Is Arpaio backing down to Gordon? Check back to Valley Fever following his "major announcement" to find out.
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.