There probably aren't too many people as happy to see 2011 come to an end as Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio -- the 79-year-old sheriff had a particularly rough year in the PR department.
Sadly, the sheriff's actions (and in some cases his inaction) often reflect poorly on Arizona and the people who live here. In other words, people across the country look at Arizonans as a bunch of shit-kickin' hillbillies dumb enough to elect someone like Arpaio sheriff.
Of Arpaio's many blunders in 2011, we've narrowed it down to what we feel are the five most embarrassing for Arizonans -- and we want to know which one you find particularly humiliating.
The entries are as follows:
A) The "Birther" investigation: In September -- at the request of conspiracy theorists and Tea Partiers -- the sheriff launched an investigation into the continuously de-bunked conspiracy theory that President Barack Obama is not a U.S. citizen. Arpaio claims microphice and Hawaiian twins are the key to solving the mystery. Get the whole story here.
B) The Elvis-themed panty party at Tent City: In August, to celebrate Tent City's 19th anniversary, Arpaio got an Elvis impersonator to sing a duet with him at the jail as female inmates threw pink panties at America's self-proclaimed "toughest sheriff." Get all the details here.
C) The Department of Justice report: In December, the DOJ announced its findings in an investigation into whether the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office's deputies racially profile Hispanics. According to the DOJ, Arpaio's on the hook for the worst racial profiling practices in U.S. history. Read all about it here.
D) The Sex-Crime Follies: Also in Decmber -- and seemingly out of nowhere -- an Associated Press reporter decided to re-report a story about how the MCSO bungled 432 sex-crime investigations over a two-year period. The re-hashing of the botched investigations became national news -- despite the East Valley Tribune's winning a Pulitzer Prize for the same story a few years ago. The sheriff says he's sorry "if" there are any victims. Read all about it here.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
E) The Drug Cartel Infiltration of the MCSO: In May, it was revealed that a deputy and two MCSO detention officers were working for a Mexican drug cartel. The deputy, as it turns out, was involved in the MCSO's human smuggling unit, and allegedly was tipping off human smugglers about the unit's operations. Get the details here.
These are only a few of Arpaio's many humiliations in 2011, and we want to know which one you think is the most embarrassing.
Cast your vote below.