Joe Arpaio leaving court after his conviction in July 2017. NPR photo
Published August 24, 2017
WASHINGTON – The White House announced tonight President Donald Trump pardoned former sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was convicted in July 2017 for intentionally disobeying a judge’s order in an immigration case.
With a hurricane soon to hit Texas, the White House made the announcement hours after Apaio was informed. The pardon comes as no suprise, since Trump hinted Arpaio “had nothing to worry about” while speaking at a campaign rally in downtown Phoenix this past Tuesday night.
“So was Sheriff Joe was convicted for doing his job?” Trump asked supporters. “I’ll make a prediction. I think he’s going to be just fine, OK.”
Arpaio, 85, the ex-sheriff of Arizona’s Maricopa County, was to be sentenced in October 2017 for his conviction of a misdemeanor charge for intentionally defying a judge’s order to stop his traffic patrols that targeted immigrants. Arpaio defied the judge’s for 18 months.
Arpaio’s harsh treatment against American Indians, Hispanics and immigrants earned him the reputation as being the “toughest sheriff in America.” He was an avid supporter of Donald Trump.
He was defeated last November for the post of Maricopa County sheriff, a position he held since his election in 1992.