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Thu May 23, 2024, 11:07 PM May 23

Taxpayer costs for profiling verdict over Joe Arpaio's immigration crackdowns to reach $314M [View all]


PHOENIX (AP) — Seven years after Joe Arpaio was ousted as sheriff of Arizona’s most populous county, taxpayers are still footing the bills from a racial profiling verdict over his signature immigration crackdowns – and those costs have been getting heavier since.

The tab for the legal and compliance costs in overhauling the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office is expected to reach $314 million by mid-summer 2025, including $41 million approved Monday by county officials -- the most expensive for Maricopa County taxpayers since the lawsuit was filed in 2007.

Nearly 11 years ago, a federal judge concluded sheriff’s deputies had racially profiled Hispanics in Arpaio’s traffic patrols that targeted immigrants. Consequently, the judge ordered costly overhauls of the agency’s traffic patrol operations and, later, its internal affairs unit.

The taxpayer spending is expected to continue until the sheriff’s office attains full compliance with the court-ordered changes for three straight years. Though progress has been made on some fronts, the agency hasn’t yet been deemed fully compliant.
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