Fed. Judge Hammers Arpaio Over Contempt of Court

So I reported last week on Sheriff Joe Arpaio admitting that he was in contempt of court in a federal case that found him guilty of rampant civil rights violations and how he filed a motion asking that an evidentiary hearing be canceled and he be allowed to get off with a slap on the wrist. Let’s just say the judge was not amused.

A judge has declined an Arizona sheriff’s proposal to cancel hearings next month to determine whether the lawman should be held in civil contempt of court for violating orders in a racial-profiling case.

But U.S. District Judge Murray Snow said Friday that Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s proposal to make a $100,000 donation to a civil rights group to atone for the violations was an adequate personal financial punishment.

Even so, Snow said he wants the money to come from Arpaio’s own pocket – not from a legal defense fund or contributions from supporters – to send a message to Arpaio and his aides that they have a personal stake in ensuring the court’s orders are followed. “I don’t know that they have had skin in the game,” Snow said…

Earlier this week, Arpaio acknowledged the violations and proposed making a public apology and pressing county officials to create a $350,000 fund to compensate people harmed by the violation of the 2011 order.

Basically, Arpaio wants the county to pony up some cash to buy his way out of his admitted civil rights violations and it doesn’t sound like the judge is buying it one bit.

"Yes, I suspect you would know. Did you see that fucking rally last night? Something ..."

Trump Wars 4: A New Hope
"True, I can't think of any foreign occupations of Afghanistan that have not gone swimmingly.Oh, ..."

Breaking Down Trump’s Afghanistan Speech
Follow Us!
POPULAR AT PATHEOS Nonreligious
What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • John Pieret

    I had assumed that the previous admissions were part of a deal between his lawyers and the judge. Now, I have to assume that Arpaio was so blatant in his flouting of the orders that his lawyers told him that the case was hopeless and his best tactic was to throw himself on the mercy of the judge. Federal judges in particular are not known for mercy towards those who disobey their orders.

  • D. C. Sessions

    Federal judges in particular are not known for mercy towards those who disobey their orders.

    Yes and no. Like any other powerful group, they tend to subscribe to the “he’s suffered enough” school of thought towards others in the ruling class. Of course, if someone goes to the amount of trouble Joe has over the past decade-plus to piss off the Court, there’s some point where the judge figures that after all, Joe is in law enforcement and does seem to subscribe to the “get their attention with repeated cranial impacts” school of behavior modification.

  • The Other Lance

    Strip that bigoted, lying sack of shit who calls himself a sheriff of this job, his law enforcement certifications (if he has any) and ban him from working in an law enforcement role ever again.

  • abb3w

    @1, John Pieret:

    Federal judges in particular are not known for mercy towards those who disobey their orders.

    That seems an understatement.

    Additional details here indicate that what the judge is holding out for is happy plaintiffs — which might be mercy, but nanoscale small. Emphasis added:

    The sheriff’s attorneys also were hoping to avoid a contempt hearing scheduled for late April. Snow isn’t yet buying that, either. The judge won’t consider that unless there’s a settlement that he believes is fair. He told the attorneys, “Let me make this clear, the schedule remains the same. If there is a settlement, let me know.

    Not helping the prospects for settlement is that the lone democrat on the county supervisors simply wants Arpaio gone — although his is only one of the five, and I guess only three votes are needed to agree to the county paying part of it.

    I’m not sure how the judge could frame a court order that would prevent contributions from supporters from being used to pay the fine, however.

  • John Pieret

    abb3w:

    I’m not sure how the judge could frame a court order that would prevent contributions from supporters from being used to pay the fine, however.

    Yeah, I have my doubts about that too. The judge can probably make Arpaio pay out of his own pocket in the first instance but I can’t see how he can stop his supporters from reimbursing him (though that could cause income and gift tax problems for everyone involved).

  • felidae

    This psychopath needs to be incarcerated, preferably in one of his outdoor jails in the AZ summer

  • Michael Heath

    Justice would be served only if Mr. Arpaio was fired and incarcerated. Allowing him to buy his way out only encourages the 1%ers to buy up more sheriffs.

  • grumpyoldfart

    American justice. Pretty to watch.

  • Konradius

    @7

    That actually raises an interesting possibility.

    Is accepting those contributions perhaps a bribe after the fact?

    If any of the contributors ever said something to the effect of ‘I’ll have your back’ when the violations were going on you’d perhaps have a case.