Feathered Bastard

Dennis Gilman Godsmacks the MCSO; Plus, the B.S. in Joe Arpaio's Latest Presser

The latest Dennis Gilman video is a doozy. It covers the MCSO sweep in the west Valley, and shows some of the ski-masked deputies involved. Having MCSO deputies pulling over cars for traffic stops in black masks like this is reminiscent of some South American dictatorship. It's meant to terrorize and to hide the faces of the guilty from scrutiny. There is absolutely no law enforcement rationale for it. None. But then again, Maricopa County, under the control of Sheriff Joe and Candy Thomas is more like a South American dictatorship than part of the United States of America.

Gilman sets the video to the tune of Godmack's Voodoo, which serves as an appropriately creepy backdrop to the MCSO's activities. He ends the video with a terrific slogan: "287(g) is Apartheid in Maricopa County." How very true.

Also, Channel 3 has posted raw footage of Wednesday's smooch session between Guadalupe Mayor Frankie Montiel and Sheriff Joe, and I think it's proper to point out some of the b.s. emanating from those mics, as I wasn't allowed into the room yesterday.

In the video, Joe tries to make his change of mind on the matter of staying in Guadalupe seem like it's all because he's such a big ol' teddy bear.

"It's just not in my heart to have to leave," claims Joe, "to make a decision to leave Guadalupe at the mercy of the bad guys."

Thing is, Guadalupe is at the mercy of the bad guys right now. You know, the men in masks and brown shirts? But be that as it may, Arpaio had no trouble cutting off Guadalupe when then Mayor Rebecca Jimenez gave him heat for his anti-Hispanic sweep in April 2008. It was Joe who first threatened to end MCSO's contract with that town shortly after Jimenez confronted him and complained that he had come into town with his dragnet under false pretenses.

The reason Joe changed his stance is that he has the new mayor in his pocket, a mayor who as recently as this past November was asking the town manager to request a saturation patrol from the MCSO. this, according to docs obtained by New Times. (See the Bird item, "Frankie the Snitch.")

Also, the MCSO's condition for a meeting between Montiel and Arpaio, according to these same council e-mails and communications, was that Guadalupe drop its lawsuit against Arpaio in federal court. Last Monday, the city did just that, setting the stage for this week's presser.

Montiel stated as much when he said, "The reason for [the lawsuit] being dropped is we have the contract back."

In reality, Arpaio never wanted to lose the $1.2 million Guadalupe contract. He just wanted to bring the town to heel, and he's done so, with Montiel as his cowed pet canine. Joe promised to call the mayor and give him a special heads up if a sweep's about to go down. He knows he'll get no resistance from Montiel.

Montiel said he "personally felt safer," while his town was being terrorized by Arpaio's goons last April, even though the MCSO so menaced the population, that little children were afraid to attend their Catholic confirmation ceremony at Our Lady of Guadalupe on the second day of the sweep. Asked if he would support a rerun of last April, Montiel meekly offered that if there were a "spike in crime" then he'd have to acknowledge a sweep as "good police work."

Montiel never seriously explored alternatives to Arpaio, never even consulted with former Mayor Jimenez over the efforts she'd made on the same subject. From jump, Montiel was pro-Joe, and wanted Arpaio to remain, even though a large majority of the town's residents want the MCSO to go. (Guadalupe went overwhelmingly for Saban in November's election.)

People I talk to in the town are pissed over Montiel's move, and there's been an executive council session called for this evening in Guadalupe to discuss the matter. Whenever Joe does decide to do another sweep in Guadalupe, the town may boil over with resentment. If Joe pulls one in the next couple of weeks, I'd say it's pretty much guaranteed.