Arizona's favorite Stalinist Sheriff, Joe Arpaio is at it again. Arpaio told Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe to pound salt in response to the Judge's Order to the Sheriff's department to publicly apologize for stealing and copying private privileged legal documents from a Public Defender in the Judge's courtroom.
Here, we go again: let's be clear, under that inconvenient document, the US Constitution there are something called rights possessed by the people, individually. Numbering among these rights: the right to a lawyer, the right of due process, the right to be secure in your property, and papers, and, believe it or not, the presumption of innocence. When a Sheriff's correctional employee steals the paperwork belonging to a criminal defendant's attorney, these and other rights are implicated. Imagine for a moment that the suspected criminal is a pretty horrible person, the Sheriff's department theft of a lawyer's papers could trigger the issuance of a (federal) writ of habeas corpus. Which would result in the horrible bad guy going free to commit even more heinous acts. Good work, Sheriff Joe!
We can legitimately question the wisdom of ordering a County official to hold a press conference to apologize for violating the civil rights of a prisoner; but, can we even begin to question the wisdom of granting leave to this out-of-control "lawman" to create and maintain his secessionist fiefdom--where Arpaio pisses all over the rule of law? Outrageous, you bet.