Feds to bring contempt charge against Sheriff Arpaio
Prosecutors said Tuesday they will charge Sheriff Joe Arpaio with criminal contempt-of-court for defying a judge’s orders to end his signature immigration patrols in Arizona, exposing the 84-year-old lawman to the possibility of jail time and clouding his political future as he seeks a seventh term.
The announcement in federal court sets in motion criminal proceedings against the sheriff less than a month before Election Day and comes as he has taken on a prominent role on the national political stage in 2016, appearing alongside Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on several occasions.
Arpaio has acknowledged violating the order to stop the immigration patrols but insists his disobedience wasn’t intentional.
U.S. District Judge Murray Snow previously recommended criminal contempt charges against Arpaio but left it up to federal prosecutors to actually bring the case.