Unless an 11th hour agreement is reached, my prediction will be proven wrong, and Joe Arpaio will face a contempt of court hearing in Room 602, Sandra Day O’Connor Courthouse. The hearing is scheduled to last 4 days.
The hearing takes place amid a storm of bad press:
- Tell it to the Judge, Joe—Just hope you don’t get what you deserve – Arizona Republic.
- Members of Arpaio’s smuggling squad accused of wrongdoing – Associated Press via CBS 5 Phoenix
- End of the road, Arpaio. Time to spill the beans – Arizona Republic
- Arpaio immigration unit tarnished by misconduct allegations – Associated Press via CBS 5 Phoenix
- New report shows MCSO still not in compliance with judge’s orders in racial profiling lawsuit – ABC 15
- Arpaio Hearing This Week: Intent is the key – Arizona Republic
- Judge throws out evidence against restaurant owner – CBS 5
Will Sheriff Joe plead the 5th Amendment?
Tune in tomorrow for the next episode of As the Spit Turns.
I nipped by the Howard Taft Online Law School (actually, I just visited Lawyers.com), to ask the question of whether Sheriff Arpaio can refuse to answer questions under the Constitutional protection of the 5th Amendment against self-incrimination. Normally the 5th Amendment doesn’t apply to civil matters, but in this instance I understand that criminal charges are on the table, albeit unlikely. The second point, is that the 5th Amendment doesn’t allow an accused to refuse to answer selected questions, but rather is an all or nothing affair regarding testimony. Either Arpaio testifies, or he refuses. For a somewhat different view, interpreting the 5th’s protections more broadly, see “You can plead the fifth in the middle of a civil lawsuit.”