Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano, has "decertified" Arizona Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, making it impossible for him to arrest illegal encroachers, "based solely on their immigration status." The decertification takes away his authority to arrest illegals solely on the basis that they are illegally in this country. Sheriff Joe Arpaio's crime suppression is illegal.
Sheriff Joe Arpaio
The Department of Homeland Security signs agreements with states or counties - not sure...and this time, that agreement was signed on September 21st and then recinded. Arpaio was offered a more limited compromise, which he did sign:
Arpaio said he will be able to still conduct the crime sweeps under state human smuggling laws and an obscure federal law that allows local police to arrest illegal immigrants.
Now I’m not under their control,” Arpaio said. “Nothing changes; that’s the irony of all of this.”
He will conduct one in two weeks “with a new twist.” Arpaio did not go into further detail about what that means.
The Department of Justice is investigating Arpaio, and what he refers to as his "crime suppression operations.
Arpaio will still have the power to check the immigration status of people booked by his officers, but not the authority to conduct street patrols looking for illegal immigrants.
Arpaio said ICE conducted an audit of his office’s use of the program, but DHS refused to release it.
Arpaio said his office managed to get a copy recently through the “back door.”
A summary of the audit said the working relationship between the sheriff’s office and ICE was good, and there were no deficiencies found after a review of case files.
“It came out perfect,” said Arpaio, citing that as the reason DHS refused to release the audit.
New "agreements" have been drafted because DHS believes local authorities are "using minor infractions to get illegal immigratnts deported." The indication is that police and sheriffs ignore "criminal aliens" and just go after the little guy. If that is the case, which I doubt that it is, why not allow the continuation of the deportation of any illegal and criticize the lack of true policing. Seems that would be the way to actually follow the law.
Arizona Republican Representatives Trent Franks and Lamar Smith issued this statement:
This unbelievable move by the Obama Administration represents a politicized attempt to hinder one of our most effective illegal immigration enforcement mechanisms, the 287(g) program....
The fact is, the 287(g) program works. Thousands of illegal immigrants apprehended for other crimes are being identified and deported. Claims that the program was supposed to focus only on serious crimes are false. In fact, the program was created to let state and local law enforcement officials help enforce all immigration laws, not a select few.
Local law enforcement agencies deserve the thanks, and not punishment, of the federal government for helping to address the problem of rampant illegal immigration, especially in area like Maricopa County that see an increase in crime, drug trafficking, and other issues because of it.
The extent that the Feds are involved in state's rights is overwhelming. That's what happens when we take federal money, and it will get worse now that we have a member of La Raza on the Supreme Court.
Instead of launching a politicized attack against a local law official who has yielded great success with the 287(g) program, the Obama Administration should replicate the success we have experienced in Maricopa County in other areas that are desperately in need of similar solutions. It is reprehensible for DHS to bully law enforcement officials who have honorably served this nation and the state of Arizona by enforcing federal and state laws and who are continuing to work to protect the American people.”
The EastValleyTribune.com is taking advantage of the latest developments by touting their report which won a Pulitzer Prize for "local news reporting," and Arpaio also took the opportunity to suggest what can be done with the "garbage five-page series" that criticized his office and how he allocates funds. Ed Morrissey at Hot Air makes the point:
The Tribune’s point about resource allocation within the sheriff’s department is well taken — and completely irrelevant. The DHS does not have the authority to dictate resource allocation of county sheriffs anywhere. The people of Maricopa County make the determination of whether their sheriff has allocated resources to their liking, not the federal government. Arpaio stands for election every four years, and so far no challenger has come within 10 points of Arpaio. If Maricopa County residents are unhappy with Arpaio’s management of resources, they’re not demonstrating it.
If the Maricopa County Sheriff Department violated civil-rights rules, then the Department of Justice has the duty to investigate and to take corrective action. So far, though, no one has proven anything of the sort — and that still wouldn’t be the jurisdiction of DHS... Read more at Hot Air.