Feathered Bastard

Joe Arpaio, MCSO Can't Back Up Bogus Claim that Fox Reality Show Collared 400 Fugitives

I know it's been, like, two whole months, but do ya recall that lousy three-episode pilot Sheriff Self-Shill shot for the lame-o Fox Reality Channel, Smile...You're Under Arrest? Remember Joe plugging it on Conan O'Brien, and elsewhere, claiming that the reality series nabbed almost 400 warrant scofflaws? Well, this piece of unadulterated trash is still repeating on the desperate-for-content cable channel, and guess who helped foot the bill for it? You, chump, that's who: Joe and Jane Taxpayer, We the People of Maricopa County, who pay the salaries of Sheriff Joe, and of all the deputies and upper echelon ass-kissers like Joe's dried-up, bottle-blonde gun moll Lisa Allen.

Thing is, the MCSO doesn't want for you to know just how much of your tax money got blown like Charles Barkley on this ode to Joe's ego. So MCSO's army of Arpaio flunkies are stonewalling legitimate public records requests that ask such simple questions as, "How many deputies participated in this boondoggle?" and, "What did they make in overtime and straight time to be extras on this reality show?"

In early January, a Lt. D. Culhane at MCSO, wrote me a letter to let me know that the MCSO didn't keep any records on who was participating in the show's production. So, you're telling me that the MCSO, a paramilitary organization, has no idea where its deputies are while they're on duty? How convenient. At least in this case.

However, maybe I'm wrong. Maybe the MCSO is so slipshod, so unprofessional, and so cavalierly run that they really have no freakin' idea where their deputies are at any given time, or how many hours they're working on the clock. This could be. After all, ask any member of any other law enforcement agency in the nation or the world, and off the record, they will tell you that the MCSO is regarded as being nearly efficient as the Honduran police force. Which the MCSO helped train, BTW.

But, moving right along, as I mentioned in my January 9 blog post on this subject, I hit the MCSO with a public records request, asking for all of the names and paperwork on the nearly 400 warrants they say they cleared as a process of conning petty criminals to come participate in the show's filming. Joe had let this slip twice, once while talking to the Arizona Republic, and once during the corrupt top constable's disastrous appearance on Late Night with Conan O'Brien. Surely the MCSO would have to comply with the request, as it is required to do under state law.

Naaah. Today, over a month later, one Officer M. Rodriguez writes me back a letter, stating, "Regarding your January 9, 2009 public records request seeking the arrest reports of those arrested in the course of this operation, we did not maintain a log of those persons arrested during this warrant detail."

In other words, Rodriguez is one of the many, many Sgt. Schultz clones in Arpaio's empire. He knows nothing, noth-ing, just like Lt. Culhane. Just like Lisa Allen. And just like Joe Arpaio, who claimed that he and scores of MCSO personnel bagged 400 or so low-level crooks on the taxpayer's time, but whose operation cannot verify one -- not one -- warrant being cleared as a result of the show.

Your taxbucks at work, folks. You voted for Sheriff Schmuck and his flunkies. You voted for the lawsuits and the unaccountability. And you voted for wasting resources and public money, even in an ever-deepening recession, where budgets are being slashed to bleeding.

Of course, not everyone voted for this clown, but for those who did, man, you guys must really love the geezer.