Notorious Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is well-known for being tough on illegal immigration, took the stand Tuesday as he faces allegations of racial profiling. And while Arpaio said he was against “anyone racially profiling,” those caught up in his controversial sweeps testified to being humiliated by the sheriff’s deputies.
In a story, which originally appeared in the Chicago Tribune, a Latino contractor, Daniel Magos, related what happened to him when he was stopped by a deputy. Magos, who was heading to an appointment with this American-born wife, was pulled over because of a missing tag on the trailer he was pulling.
Follow this link for the original article: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-07-25/news/sns-rt-us-usa-arizona-sheriffbre86o1kh-20120725_1_arpaio-illegal-immigrants-federal-government-sole-authority
Though this was a minor traffic stop that would at most warrant a ticket, Magos said the officer yelled at him and his wife. He was instructed to get out of his truck where he was frisked under his arms and on his groin. Magos said he felt “humiliated, worthless, defenseless.”
Magos, who has been an American citizen for 45 years, said the officer later apologized and told him the stop “had nothing to do with racial profiling.” But Magos and all of the other Latino immigrants stopped by the department since 2007 believed otherwise and filed the suit against the Sheriff with the help of immigration activist group Somos America.
The court also heard testimony from deputies denying that they targeted Latino immigrants in the infamous sweeps, though 57 percent of the 1,500 people arrested in 20 sweeps were Latino.
Arpaio also had to defend his “dirty immigrant,” remark which he claims was taken out of context, and rationalized the comment by saying if someone traveled through the desert barefoot for four days to cross the border they “could be dirty,” according to Politico.
Racial profiling is a major concern for immigration activists and civil rights advocates who are aggressively challenging Arizona’s ‘papers please” provision in the state’s immigration law.
Millions of Latinos in the country took the steps to hire immigration attorneys and obtain the visas necessary which paved the way for their U.S. citizenship. You can obtain more information about visas and naturalization here: http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis.