Arpaio: Publicity 1, Justice 0
posted by Mike McClellan
at 1 October, 8:26 AM 0
One thing becomes clear after you read today’s article on Joe Arpaio’s Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department — publicity is more important than justice.
The article — you can read it here — highlights Arpaio’s shortcomings in investigating sexual assaults in his jurisdiction. While he was busy ginning up stories about “public corruption” and “crime suppression sweeps” — when he was intimidating political opponents or arresting landscapers, in other words — hundreds of sexual assault cases went un- or underinvestigated.
They don’t know.
Repeatedly, when asked why this happened, that was the answer:
The Board of Supervisors allocate $600,000 for more sex crimes detectives. They weren’t hired, with the money instead going somewhere else.
Where? They don’t know. Says Chief Deputy Jerry Sheridan, “We’re sad. We’re sorry that we didn’t put the recourse in the sex crimes. But it wasn’t done. Why? I don’t know.”
But the best part of the story — “best” being most ludicrous — is one comment by the MCSO’s chief publicity flak, Lisa Allen. Who, by the way, seems to have adopted a much lower profile these days.
When confronted by the facts of one particularly horrid case that became even worse because Arpaio’s office failed to investigate, resulting in even more assaults by the suspect in the original case, Allen had this to say:
“I understand our need as a society — and the media’s needs — that they want to point a finger of blame. We have accepted that this is partially our problem. We’ve apologized for it. But if we had done more work and put somebody in prison, maybe they would have gone to prison and then killed some other inmate. Are we then responsible for that, too?”
Yes, Lisa, the MCSO saved other inmates from possible death. It was a good trade, LIsa: Possibly saving some inmates from possible death in exchange for a little girl being repeatedly raped by the suspect, after your office failed to follow through.
How could Lisa Allen concoct such a ridiculous response? How could Arpaio oversee such a sloppy organization? How do we keep electing him?
I don’t know.
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