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Arpaio’s bad polling, and Montgomery’s emergency

Public Policy Polling has a new poll out that gives us some information about how the people of Arizona feel about the Maricopa County sheriff. Most in Maricopa County (53%) expressed a negative view of Arpaio (the same percentage that disapprove of President Obama’s job performance). The poll showed that Maricopa county is more progressive than Arizona as a whole, and that there is a considerable age gap in the results. The poll was conducted May 1-3.

Update: Klayman petition denied by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

In the meantime Larry Klayman filed an emergency petition on behalf of Dennis Montgomery before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals for the forced recusal of district judge G. Murray Snow, who has been questioning Sheriff’s Office leadership about their involvement with Mr. Montgomery, and who has demanded production of documents related to the investigation in which Montgomery was involved.

Included in that petition are additional excerpts from Arpaio’s contempt of court hearing with testimony from Chief Deputy Jerry Sheridan. Here’s a bit:

Judge Snow: How did he [Montgomery] know – how did he arrive at the conclusion that the DOJ had accessed my computer?

Sheridan: Again, we were always skeptical of what he was giving us. However, he was giving us information on occasion that was credible.

We had a seated justice in Washington – I can’t recall his name; I have it written down on my pad, Your Honor – that is a member of the FISA court in Washington, D.C. We had Mr. Mon – because the sheriff and I were concerned about the CIA wiretapping our phones. This justice actually confirmed that these were typical wiretap numbers, and so it did give Mr. Montgomery a little more credibility with us.

And we continued to work with him, we continued to keep him him on our informant payroll, so to speak, as he was producing information. But it became very slow, it became very stale, and we finally realized that he was stringing us along.

What was revealed in the Sheridan testimony, is that Dennis Montgomery claimed to have what appears to be raw TCP/IP packets of information from the Internet, and that he, using the “super computer” in his garage could assemble these packets into the original emails after a lengthy process. (The TCP/IP protocol supports breaking an Internet transmission into smaller “packets” of information, each of which may take a different route to reach its destination.)

The claim by Mr. Montgomery that he has in his possession this volume of raw Internet traffic, inevitably consisting of private Internet communications: emails, financial transactions, passwords, and other personal information, is highly disturbing to this writer. If Mr. Montgomery is telling the truth, then he is probably guilty of a crime, and should be prosecuted.

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Arpaio: perjury?

imageStephen Lemons of the Phoenix New Times used the “p” word in his article yesterday, “Judge Snow Rips the Lid Off an MCSO Riddled With Corruption, Confirming My Reporting in the Process.”

Lemons reported last June that Arpaio was paying a confidential informant big bucks to investigate an alleged conspiracy involving the Justice Department and federal judge G. Murray Snow. In testimony last week Sheriff Arpaio and Chief Deputy Sheridan confirmed the payments and the investigation. Sheridan further admitted that they got nothing useful from the informant, Dennis Montgomery, and that Montgomery was just stringing them along.

What Arpaio and Sheridan said in court was that he was investigating an allegation that the CIA had accessed 50,000 individual bank records in Maricopa County and that there was some wrongdoing involving the Justice Department and federal judges, but that Judge Snow’s inclusion in the investigation was incidental. So was the investigation of Snow central or tangential—targeted or coincidental? Lemons wrote:

My information always has been that Arpaio was up to his old tricks, attempting to conflict the judge, find dirt on him, and retaliate for adverse rulings.

A second point of conflict between Arpaio’s testimony and Lemon’s information is about who investigated the Judge’s wife. According to testimony, Arpaio attorney Tim Casey hired the investigator. Casey issued a statement that seems to contradict that. Lemons reported that the County Attorney’s Office was somehow involved.

So far Lemons has proven to be the more reliable source for what’s going on. I hope we’ll know a lot more when court hearings resume next June.

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Sheriff Joe’s universe may be shattering

It sucks to be Joe Arpaio this week.

imageFirst there is the Phoenix New Times story today (BANG!) by award-wining journalist Stephen Lemons, that opens up a big can of worms. It begins with some behind-the-scenes comments from Joe Arpaio suggesting that the birther investigation was motivated by fundraising, citing footage from a new film about Arpaio, The Joe Show, The New Times writes:

The most revealing part of Phoenix filmmaker Randy Murray’s recent documentary The Joe Show was a strategy meeting during Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s 2012 re-election campaign that included Arpaio, his top flack, Lisa Allen, Chief Deputy Jerry Sheridan, and campaign manager Chad Willems.

The group huddled in the back of a Fountain Hills restaurant to discuss how to spin Joe’s negatives — the misspending of more than $100 million, the deaths in the jails, the scores of millions in lawsuit payouts — for the public.

At some point, Arpaio’s “birther” investigation came up.  …

At the mere mention of the birther investigation and the future press event, Allen and Willems practically rolled their eyes.

Willems called the birther probe “nuts.”

Allen said the sheriff might as well go the press conference “in big ol’ clown shoes.”
Arpaio shrugged, literally.

“There ain’t gonna be no damage control,” Arpaio promised Willems. “You’ll get more money [in campaign contributions] than you’ll know what to do with.”

imageIt gets worse on that topic (read the New Times article), but we then are given some idea what the Universe-shattering investigation is all about. The Sheriff’s Office confirmed some kind of investigation was in the works, but not about the birth certificate. Informants tell the New Times that the investigation is about Eric Holder and federal judge G. Murray Snow, the one who is overseeing enforcement as a result of a lawsuit proving pervasive racial profiling within Arpaio’s Department. And then there is the Seattle scammer. Sources say that $100,000 has been paid to notorious con man Dennis Montgomery. When asked, both Arpaio and Montgomery declined to deny that they were working together.  You just have to read the thing to believe it.

Next there is the sad story of Maricopa County deputy Ramon Armendariz who appeared to be shaking down undocumented aliens.  He apparently committed suicide by hanging and cannot be questioned as to how widespread the misconduct was within the department, but perhaps these facts have a very different interpretation. Further, 900 hours of videos of traffic stops that were supposed to be turned over to the Court were found in his house. This story was widely reported by the national press. It certainly leaves a lot of questions and I’ll be interested to see how the story plays out.

And if that weren’t enough, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals released its decision on Monday, awarding $975,000 to former Maricopa County Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox in a lawsuit against Arpaio and other county officials for false arrest and prosecution, bringing the total to over $12 million for those cases.

Finally an investigation has uncovered evidence suggesting that Maricopa County Sheriffs Office personnel and equipment were involved in the production of Jerome Corsi and Mike Zullo’s for-profit eBook, A Question of Law Eligibility: A Law Enforcement Investigation into Barack Obama’s Birth Certificate and his Eligibility to be President. The book, copyrighted by Jerome Corsi and Mike Zullo drew initial criticism as some dollars rolled in to Mike Zullo for what many think should have been the property of the non-profit Cold Case Posse not for Zullo’s personal use. Zullo sidestepped that issue by claiming he gave the money to his church. Now the question is more difficult with County resources involved. This topic led me to review that book, and in the light of what we know now about the Obama birth certificate PDF file, it looks pretty bad. For details on this investigation, check out “MCSO Public Information Officer Brian Lee Helped Write ‘A Question of Eligibility’ eBook” at the RC Radio Blog.

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