Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Would Sheriff Joe Arpaio last a day in Santa Fe?

Almost every Month since the day I won my first election in June 2002 someone from somewhere in America forwards me this email. They "if from New Mexico are usually recent transplants to our area" want me to be like Joe. Most of you have probably read this but if you have not, read ahead and afterwards we will discuss if Sheriff Joe Arpaio would last a day in Santa Fe.

Subject: Fw: Sheriff Joe - Re-elected

sheriff Joe - Re-elected



Sheriff Joe Arpaio (in Arizona) who created the "tent city jail":

He has jail meals down to 40 cents a serving and charges the inmates for them.

He stopped smoking and porno magazines in the jails. Took away their weights. Cut off all but "G" movies.

He started chain gangs so the inmates could do free work on county and city projects.

Then he started chain gangs for women so he wouldn't get sued for discrimination.

He took away cable TV until he found out there was a federal court order that required cable TV for jails. So he hooked up the cable TV again only let in the Disney channel and the weather channel.

When asked why the weather channel he replied, so they will know how hot it's gonna be while they are working on my chain gangs.

He cut off coffee since it has zero nutritional value.

When the inmates complained, he told them, "This isn't the Ritz/Carlton. If you don't like it, don't come back."

He bought Newt Gingrich' lecture series on videotape that he pipes into the jails.

When asked by a reporter if he had any lecture series by a Democrat, he replied that a democratic lecture series might explain why a lot of the inmates were in his jails in the first place.

More on the Arizona Sheriff:

With temperatures being even hotter than usual in Phoenix (116 degrees just set a new record), the Associated Press reports: About 2,000 inmates living in a barbed-wire-surrounded tent encampment at the Maricopa County Jail have been given permission to strip down to their government-issued pink boxer shorts.

On Wednesday, hundreds of men wearing boxers were either curled up on their bunk beds or chatted in the tents, which reached 138 degrees inside the week before.

Many were also swathed in wet, pink towels as sweat collected on their chests and dripped down to their pink socks.

"It feels like we are in a furnace," said James Zanzot, an inmate who has lived in the tents for 1 ½ years. "It's inhumane."

Joe Arpaio, the tough-guy sheriff who created the tent city and long ago started making his prisoners wear pink, and eat Bologna sandwiches, is not one bit sympathetic He said Wednesday that he told all of the inmates: "It's 120 degrees in Iraq and our soldiers are living in tents too, and they have to wear full battle gear, but they didn't commit any crimes, so shut your damned mouths!"

Way to go, Sheriff! Maybe if all prisons were like this one there would be a lot less crime and/or repeat offenders. Criminals should be punished for their crimes - not live in luxury until it's time for their parole, only to go out and commit another crime so they can get back in to live on taxpayers money and enjoy things taxpayers can't afford to have for themselves.

If you agree, pass this on. If not, delete it.

So there you have it. As I stated earlier the email is sent to me often and usually with a suggestion that I implement these ideas here. Here, the land of Rothstein, Donatelli, Hughes, Dahlstrom, Schoenburg & Bienvenu LLP. In case you don't know of this law firm they are the local Santa Fe Attorneys who made millions of Taxpayer dollars in the Duran Consent Decree case which came out of the 1980 Prison Riot. In between then and now, millions more taxpayer dollars were made suing practically every city and county in the state as well as numerous other state and federal cases. They specialize in suing government and taking taxpayer dollars that if not given to them could actually be used to make jail, prison, and law enforcement better.

The firm recently made 2 million in the Santa Fe Strip Search Case in which allegations were made that the private company which ran the jail at the time took part in illegal strip searches. This case amazed me since the firm did about 6 months of work on the case which amounts to about 1,600 a day assuming someone worked 8 hours a day Monday through Friday for the approximately six months this case was worked on. So How much would Rothstein, Donatelli and company get if we operated a tent city and fed prisoners 40 cents a day worth of food?

Some have tried unsuccessfully to recall Sheriff Arpaio however his election numbers continue to be very high and with no term limits he will probably be Sheriff as long as he wants to be.

The big question I have is why has the Department of Justice has allowed Joe Arpaio to continue to these conditions while we work hard to provide a safe secure facility in Santa Fe? The truth is that we have people here who continue and probably always will complain while in Arizona Joe Arpaio is considered a hero. Don't get me wrong, this is not a case of Sheriff envy. I would never want to be known for the things Sheriff Arpaio is known for. In Santa Fe the worst thing I could do would be to subject prisoners to hours of watching Newt Gingrich, that would be cruel and unusual punishment if I ever saw it. In the land of the city different, living wage, immigrant free zones, and what is arguably among the most liberal counties in America, would Joe Arpaio ever even be elected? (he is a Republican which explains a lot) I usually respond to these emails, when I do respond, with a polite but firm statement. I would be hung on the plaza at high noon from the new bandstand if I even considered 10% of what Sheriff Arpaio does in Arizona, and rightfully so.

Would you elect Joe Arpaio Sheriff in Santa Fe County? Click comments below and talk about it. You can do so Anonymously.


Kev said...

I find that prisoners get way more than they deserve as far as priveleges go. I think that they deserve nothing extra other than the neccesary items to live and some counseling, maybe to prevent their return to the system. I just wish we did not have to baby criminals...and we do!!
You do an oustanding job as Sheriff, But you'll never please everyone and you know this.

Anonymous said...

I have always voted for you but I wouldn't mind some of his tactics in Santa Fe and I am a liberal! Jails are like quinceaneras in New Mexico...Get tougher!

Anonymous said...

Ok Sheriff, I admit sometimes I do read your blog. Interesting questions you bring up here. Sure it seems logical that the taxpayer dollars would be better spent improving the jails and prisons than for the lawyers that are suing them. Unfortunately, if not for the lawsuits then things would not likely change at all. When a person or organization gets hit in the pocketbook, they generally try to make changes to prevent lawsuits or fines, which ironically makes things better for everyone involved. In health care we have these experiences with JCAHO all the time.

I read last week that there are 4 lawsuits against the jail medical department. I had a good job in the jail medical dept. up until the county took over. Dr. Kay (from Wisconsin) decided that I did not have enough personality to work at the jail in the town that I have lived in all my life. Fortunately I still had my part time job in the UNMH emergency dept. where I've worked as a nurse for almost 6 years and, also ironically, Dr. Kay had been fired from (so I'd heard) shortly before she started working at the jail. You know, I never even worked with her there.

Anyway, to make a long story practically endless, I would personally rather see my tax dollars go to law firms like Donatelli's who are working to make sure that the governments are instituting policies and regulating them to improve conditions at the jail, than to pay Dr. Kay's salary, her lawyers, and her lawsuits while she gains experience in corrections. I guess I'm working 2 jobs to pay for both.

So your next question about the DOJ, hard to answer, too rhetorical.

And last, would I vote for Joe Arpaio as sheriff in Santa Fe county? No, usually what works in other places doesn't work here.


Anonymous said...

No one should aspire to be like Sheriff Joe Arpaio. He is named as a defendant, as of this writing, in 4,344 lawsuits in U.S. District Court and another 500 or 600 in Maricopa County Superior Court. He's had so many claims paid against him for wrongful deaths, medical neglect, preventable suicides and murders by inmates due to no supervision, that the risk insurance deductible was raised from $1 million per incident to $5 million per incident. He is the single largest liability to taxpayers in Maricopa County. The reason mainstream media hasn't made a peep about it is because his son-in-law is on the editorial board of the Arizona Republic and, up until recently, his daughter worked for the Tribune, the other major metropolitan newspaper.

Linda Bentley
Cave Creek, AZ

Anonymous said...

Sheriff Joe sucks. His Correction Officers are so inconsistent, they make their own rules. They do not go by "the law" or the rules of the jail. For the womens tents they provided no water, no vending machines (they were on the mens side) and by the time the women get to go to the vending machine (which is only twice a day - men have access 24/7) the machines are empty, OH and who is in charge of filling the machine, Sheriff Joe's brother. The only time the Correction Officers are on the yard is strictly for head count. Everyone smokes, everyone does all of the things he says he is keeping out. So his system is NOT working because there are so so so many repeat offenders. Sure if you commit a crime you should be punished but it doesn't mean you should be treated like dirt. I met, saw some very well educated, respectful women in the tents and in return they got degrading comments, no response, a different answer than the time they asked before. Sheriff Joe apparently enforces these hard punishments but he allows his employees to treat the inmates HOWEVER they choose. One last thing, when it comes to giving medication (prescribed by your doctor) the officers ignore you, or tell you it's too late or some other excuse. It is so sad. We are all human, we all make mistakes, but we should not be treated like this. The animals in Joe Arpaios shelter (near the tents) get treated far better than any inmate. Yes I know they did not commit a crime, but that just goes to show you he is not looking out for the best interest of ARIZONA.

Dave Kelleway said...

You should reply with my amended version...

Subject: FW: JOE ARPAIO MARICOPA (amended version)

TO THOSE OF YOU NOT FAMILIAR WITH JOE ARPAIO, HE IS THE MARICOPA COUNTY SHERIFF (Red Neck,ARIZONA) (where they think Hitler was a bit of a leftie and that George Bush is an intellectual)AND HE KEEPS GETTING ELECTED OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

These are some of the reasons why:

Because the electorate are all related

Sheriff Joe Arpaio created the "tent city jail" to save Arizona from spending tens of million of dollars on another expensive prison complex.
(The money was needed to pay for the bombing of civilians in Iraq)

He has jail meals down to 40 cents a serving and charges the inmates for them. (if they weren’t already starving, they will be now – that will teach them to be caught being Black in a built up area, and willfully head butting police truncheons)

He banned smoking and porno magazines in the jails, and took away their weightlifting equipment and cut off all but "G" movies.
The Warders were devastated – they might have to read something with words in now!
He says: "they're in jail to pay a debt to society not to build muscles so they can assault innocent people when they leave." (He was talking about those warders again!)

He started chain gangs to use the inmates to do free work on county and city projects and save taxpayer's money.
This is preferred to paying people enough to work, so that they don’t have to resort to crime to feed their families.
Providing free workers from the prisons keeps more people unemployed, and keeps the whole conveyor belt rolling!

Then he started chain gangs for women so he wouldn't get sued for discrimination. (Oh, and because he was a sadist)

He took away cable TV until he found out there was a federal court order that required cable TV for jails. So he hooked up the cable TV again but only allows the Disney channel and the weather channel.
(At least he spared them the religious channels – who said he was cruel?)

When asked why the weather channel he replied: "so these morons will know how hot it's gonna be while they are working on my chain gangs."
Good reasoning – show them respect, so that they will learn how to change their attitude to others when they leave – it’s the Christian way.

He cut off coffee because it has zero nutritional value and is therefore a waste of taxpayer money. When the inmates complained, he told them, "This isn't the Ritz/Carlton. If you don't like it, don't come back." (I don’t think they came voluntarily in the first place!)

He also bought the Newt Gingrich lecture series on US history that he pipes into the jails. When asked by a reporter if he had any lecture series by a Democrat, he replied that a democratic lecture series that actually tells the truth for a change would be welcome and that it might even explain why 95% of the inmates were in his jails in the first place.
Whereas of course, George Bush is the most honest citizen of the USA – just look at those Iraqi weapons of mass destruction piling up as they find more every day! Dang, where are we gonna put them all?

With temperatures being even hotter than usual in Phoenix (116 degrees just set a new record for June 2nd), the Associated Press reports: About 2,000 inmates living in a barbed- wire-surrounded tent encampment at the Maricopa County Jail have been given permission to strip down to their government-issued pink boxer shorts. Pink boxers - positive discrimination for the gays! Getting more progressive after all!

On Wednesday, hundreds of men wearing pink boxer shorts were chatting in the tents, where temperatures reached 128 degrees. "This is hell. It feels like we live in a furnace," said Ernesto Gonzales, an inmate for 2 years with 10 more to go. "It's inhumane."
No, it’s called cremation. Don’t you know we have the death penalty in the USA? That’s why we are the safest country in the world!!

Joe Arpaio, who makes his prisoners wear pink, (ooh get you!)and eat bologna sandwiches, is not one bit sympathetic. "Criminals should be punished for their crimes - not live in luxury until it's time for parole, only to go out and commit more crimes so they can come back in to live on taxpayers money and enjoy things many taxpayers can't afford to have for themselves."
“In any case, I love this job, as I get to freely express my sadism and kinkiness for seeing men in pink pants – oooh, they look sooo sexy!!”

Wednesday he told all the inmates who were complaining of the heat in the tents: "It's between 120 to 130 degrees in Iraq and our soldiers are living in tents too, and they have to walk all day in the sun, wearing full battle gear and get shot at, and they have not committed any crimes, - well just a few – well alright, so 250,000 have been killed, but some of them were armed!! And the children might have been a threat when they grew up! And they were foreign! And Abu Ghraib was just some of my cousins having a bit of light entertainment, so shut your damned mouths!"

Way to go, Sheriff! If all prisons were like yours there would be a lot less crime and we would not be in the current position of running out of prison spaces.
If you agree, pass this on.

Sheriff Joe was just re-elected Sheriff in Maricopa County, HillBilly Ville , Arizona
It was unanimous – all of his cousins voted. (even they could just about manage to scrawl an “x”!)

Anonymous said...

I was sentenced to 60 days in tent city for a second offense DUI. I fully understand that I broke the law and that I deserved the punishment that I received. I was under no impression that I would be headed to a hotel for those 60 days. However, the things that go on in the tents are absolutely jaw dropping.. While I understand that I should be punished I didn't expect to be treated WORSE than the murderer's and the sex offenders. The bathrooms at one point had feces bubbling up thru the drains in the showers along with a serious mold problem. It wasn't until Joe offered to let Paris Hilton come stay at the tents did he call the city inspector to come out and take a look, to make sure that things were up to standard. Once the inspector saw the issue he immediately condemned the bathroom and Joe was ordered to move the women (mostly DUI offenders) within 24 hours. I wonder why the health inspector wasn't called for us? I can guarantee that nothing would have been done and we would still be standing in shit (literally) if it wasn't for the Paris fiasco. I have personally watched Detention Officers push women that are old enough to be their grandmothers for not getting on the bus quick enough, causing this particular ladies leg to bleed so bad it soaked her sock, and wasn't even offered a band-aid. I personally have had the ladmo bags with moldy grapefruits thrown at my head so hard the grapefruit exploded inside the bag. For what? Evidentally we didn't take the lunch bags from her quick enough. I have seen other older women in so much pain they could hardly walk, be refused their medication, or women that have extremely high blood pressure again refused their medication. Now the female inmates have returned to the tents under the theory that the bathrooms were completed however at this time they have not. They have only plumed and put in sinks with Hot water handles, NO COLD WATER. So here it is almost July, this weekend it is supposed to be 115 degree, we have no cold water, other than one cooler they fill for drinking, but not to shower/cool off or brush your teeth. The girls that are on work furlough that are only allowed to go to work and back to the tents have no way to shower in the morning right now. The tents we are not allowed to roll the sides down during the day so you lay on a bunk litterally baking in the sun with no shade. This is insane. The sex offenders have air conditioned rooms, which by the way over look the womens yard so that you can see them in the windows staring at you while they things to themselves that I won't mention here..So you tell me how taking a productive member of society, that pays their taxes, works full time jobs, and are a menance to noone (other than their indiscresion of having a drink and driving) and putting them in a place like this is solving anything. With todays technology why not build cars that already have ignition inter-lock devices in them? Make it a federal law that the car manufacturers are required to build cars equipped with these. This would stop drinking and driving all together. Wouldn't it?? I know that people that don't drink might feel like it is an infringement of their rights, but if it saves lives, isn't that the least they could do? Or that would be to simple and to easy. Now Arpaio wouldn't have the funds from DUI fines to pay for his publicity stunts that he likes to pull to take the media attention off of all of the lawsuits he is losing, which the tax payers are paying for, or at least the the 5 million dollar insurance deductible that was increase from a million dollars. We should put a stop to drinking and driving, I believe this whole heartedly, I just believe there are better ways to do this then to ruin peoples lives and put them in danger, by mixing them in a jail with other serious crime offenders. I feel as if people look at me now because of the two DUI's I have had as an alcoholic, when in all actuallity I maybe drink once a month. I did make two very bad choices, and I was caught and I have paid the price, but again there has to be better ways to punish people for something that up until the last 8 years was the social norm.


Old Texan said...

I just read this web site and some of the postings, and I found this all very interesting.

Dave Kelleway's post was a great example of American liberalism at it's finest. He couldn't make any intelligent points, so he hurls insults. Sadly, this is typical and predictable of every liberal candidate in America, and most of their supporters.

Then I read the post about the recent guest of tent city and how he/she only drinks once a month but somehow got caught both times. WOW, that is some bad luck!! What are the chances that you will do it again - in Maricopa? I would bet that you have already either had a return visit to tent city, or you have wised up and quit putting other people's lives at risk by driving your car on the streets of Maricopa while wasted! Or maybe your luck has changed and you are still getting hammered once a month (wink, wink) and just making it home without getting caught. Who knows.

The bottom line is that punishment should be a deterrent with enough bite to make a would-be criminal seriously consider the consequences of what he or she is about to do. And in this case if it made our monthly drinker call a cab instead of risking driving, then job well done.

Certainly all prisoners deserve access to fresh water, to hygenically clean restrooms and showers, and access to their medication when they need it.

The murderers and rapists definitely should not be allowed to live in better conditions. They should simply be executed once convicted like they they were for all of human history up until the last 50 years.

Anonymous said...

I just got back from this joke. What a waste of time and money. The best way to put it is walk into a dive bar and picture yourself camping with every patron of the bar with no fire or barbeque. The stories you are hearing in the blogs from their experiences are absolutely true. It's not fair to have the serious offenders treated better then someone that has committed a DUI. The DUI punishment today is not to save lifes it's to make money. I spent nearly $8000 on my case. One thing I did notice in all of this is how much Sheriff Joe has plastered his name all over everything. How much is it going to cost to remove his name after he dies or is voted out of office? I love how he spends our tax dollars to once again promote himself. This guy has the biggest ego, he thinks he is god and he now has a reality show! Way to vote him back in... I blame it on the snow birds!!! hehe.....

Anonymous said...

Sheriff Solano: If you make an arrest of a person that has committed a crime and you or one of your deputies "suspects" they may be in the country illegally, do you ask or prove their immigration status? Or do you not ask at all?

Sheriff Greg Solano said...

If the arrest is a misdemeanor the question is not asked. If the arrest is for a felony then the status is checked by the courts and immigration is notified during the routine checks. It is then up to ICE to determine whether or not a hold is placed.

An interesting note. We meet with ICE yearly to discuss issues and they have always told us they do not want to be called on every traffic stop or misdemeanor because if they were they would be overrun and could not handle the inquiry's or the holds and deportations.