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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: U.S. | Government & Elections | Immigrant Rights | Police State and Prisons | Racial Justice
ACORN: Call on Congress to Investigate Arizona Civil Rights Abuses
In Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio has been terrorizing communities for years, engaging in police brutality, forced family separation, racial profiling, slow emergency response times, unjustified arrests, inmate abuses and more. His latest action, forcing more than 200 undocumented immigrants to march through the streets in chains to a tent city surrounded by an electric fence, is just his latest ourrage against human rights.
We can't stand by and let these abuses continue. House Judiciary Committee Chair John Conyers has asked that Attorney General Eric Holder and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano open investigations into Arpaio's actions. Please sign on below to show your solidarity against civil rights abuses and to bring this Sheriff to justice!
TO SIGN THE PETITION, GO TO:
Dear Attorney General Holder and Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano,
We, as ACORN members, supporters and allies, are writing to urge you to fulfill the request made by House Judiciary Committee Chair John Conyers and all Judiciary Subcommittee Chairs to investigate Maricopa County (Arizona) Sheriff Joe Arapio for civil rights violations and possible violations of his 287(g) agreement with the Federal government.
Sheriff Arpaio has long boasted of his "tough" approach in Maricopa County, but this has time and again resulted in a complete disregard for civil rights, due process, and basic human decency, culminating in his most recent affront to human rights: marching more than 200 undocumented prisoners, in chains, through a public street to a tent city surrounded by an electric fence.
Arpaio has long terrorized Latino communities with neighborhood "sweeps," looking for undocumented immigrants to arrest and deport. On his watch, according to a report by the Goldwater Institute editorialized about in the New York Times, violent crime and homicide rates have gone up significantly, along with "a long and well-documented trail of inmate abuses, unjustified arrests, racial profiling, brutal and inept policing and wasteful spending." 
Arpaio made headlines in December  when he arrested four ACORN members and staff just for clapping during a County Board of Supervisors meeting. 
Therefore, Attorney General Holder and Secretary Napolitano, we are asking that you use your authority to open investigations into Sheriff Arpaio’s actions. We ask you to investigate Arpaio’s actions related to possible civil and human rights violations such as racial profiling, retaliatory arrests, police brutality, unlawful detention, and the forced separation of families, as well as violations of his 287(g) agreement with the United States government.
 New York Times, Dec. 31, 2008: America’s Worst Sheriff (Joe Arpaio)
 East Valley Tribune, Dec. 21, 2008: Arpaio, activist group standing their ground
 New York Times, Dec. 17, 2008: Four Arrests Raise Tension in Dispute Over Sheriff