Sheriff Joe Arpaio Wants to Know What Websites You've Visited


If, that is, you've ever read the Phoenix New Times online. The alternative weekly has run several articles over the years critical of the so-called "toughest sheriff in America." But when an investigative piece on a series of questionable Arpaio real estate transactions included the sheriff's home address (possibly violating state law), Arpaio launched an incredibly broad, wide-reaching investigation that looks an awfully lot like retaliation.

Last August, the grand jury investigating the case issued a sweeping, probably unconstitutional subpoena demanding that in addition to reporter notes, drafts or articles, and internal memos, the New Times also turn over:

A) which pages visitors access or visit on the Phoenix New Times website;

B) the total number of visitors to the Phoenix New Times website;

C) information obtained from 'cookies,' including, but not limited to, authentication, tracking, and maintaining specific information about users (site preferences, contents of electronic shopping carts, etc.);

D) the Internet Protocol address of anyone that accesses the Phoenix New Times website from January 1, 2004 to the present;

E) the domain name of anyone that has accessed the Phoenix New Times website from January 1, 2004 to the present;

F) the website a user visited prior to coming to the Phoenix New Times website;

G) the date and time of a visit by a user to the Phoenix New Times website;

H) the type of browser used by each visitor (Internet Explorer, Mozilla, Netscape Navigator, Firefox, etc.) to the Phoenix New Times website; and

I) the type of operating system used by each visitor to the Phoenix New Times website."

After the special prosecutor in the case attempted to arrange a possibly-illegal ex-parte meeting with the grand jury and the judge, the New Times decided to publish the contents of the grand jury subpeona (pdf), explaining at the time that doing so may well get the paper's editors arrested.

It did. Arpaio had the paper's executive editor and CEO arrested last night.

My favorite New Times article on Arpaio and his deputies here.

NEXT: Ronery Reading

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  1. I hope the folks who always moan about the federal government is always evil and federalism is always da bomb read this. Local government can be very tyrannical, and often it' only the feds who can set these kind of tin-badge tyrants straight.

  2. They couldn't possibly want to actually slog through any of the data they asked for. It's clearly harrassment.

  3. Its sHERRiff Joe's police state, I'm just trying to read the paper in it (hopefully not while "standing noticably" on the sidewalk)

  4. Well of course state and local governments can be tyrannical, but they're easier to avoid than federal laws and regulations. Seeking federal control over states and localities is simply displacing the problem, not fixing the problem.

  5. I tend to be a late adopter, so considering I use Tor by default now, I expect every reasonable person to browse anonymously by now.

  6. It's not true that only the Feds can fix the problem either. This local tyranny is only possible because the citizens of Phoenix endorse it.

  7. This is why people need assault weapons.

  8. I, for one, view all levels of government as equal opportunity evil, and the people who vote them back into office as accomplices. The feds just charge us more for the privilege.

  9. wonder when Carol Gotbaum's autopsy will be done.

  10. This is why people need assault weapons.

    Slack, I think people in Phoenix HAVE assualt weapons.

  11. Having lived in a particularly corrupt small city that is still particularly corrupt I would say that the locals are not easier to avoid than the feds.

    Still recommending Clint Bolick's Grassroots Tyranny.

  12. Just a reminder:

    Another example of Sheriff Joe's Gulag Corral lies in the War on Drugs episode of P&T: Bullshit!

  13. "It's not true that only the Feds can fix the problem either. This local tyranny is only possible because the citizens of Phoenix endorse it." Duh, and that's the problem. As long as he keeps a majority of one he will run that town however he wants. But, he has to answer to the feds if he violates national law or the constitution.

  14. I have a question. Doe anyone know what sort of investigation would need any of the things that were subpoenaed?

  15. With the recent takedown of former Broward County (FL) sheriff Ken Jenne I'm tentatively encouraged that we might be able get that dirtbag Arpaio, too.

  16. If there's anything to take from this, it is that:

    The local chapter of the ACLU has been battling with Arpaio for a while now. I'm sure they'll jump on this quickly.

    It could have happened somewhere else; somewhere that nobody's watching...

  17. At least it is a DRY tyranny.

    It all makes sense now - commenter joe's last name is Arpaio.

  18. I don't care that inmates don't get porno, coffee, smokes, and can only watch Animal Planet. I don't care about the chain gangs or the pink underwear.

    I DO care about prisoner abuse, and I also want to know how this former DEA agent can come up with a million dollars cash to buy real estate. That just smells bad because as they used to say in the old days, everybody knows the DEA has the best drugs.

    Further disclaimer: I take the obvious position that nobody should be in jail for any victimless crime and those who are in jail should be there because they are true criminals with complaining victims. Justice should be quick, consistent, and commensurate with the crime.

  19. Boy, I can't wait to never go to Phoenix. Sounds like a real shit-ka-bob.

  20. Hey, some of my best friends live in Phoenix.

    But I have to say, in the last 15 years it truly has become LA in the Desert. It used to be such a great town, now it's just like So Cal, except hotter, there's no beaches, and you can carry a gun.

  21. I just realized that last comment is going to piss off everybody I know that's from Ca or Az.

  22. I see some "selective enforcement" on the horizon. It has been a long time since I saw a copy of the "New Times" but a lot of alternative papers rely heavily on advertising from escort services and the like. What are the odds Hero of Law Enforcement Arpaio starts making noises about "New Times'" complicity in some sort of solicitation for prostitution case?

  23. Dude (Wine Commonsewer)! I lived in Phoenix for several years (and am still in AZ), and you are absolutely correct in your assessment. It's a landfill under a heat lamp...

  24. I just realized that last comment is going to piss off everybody I know that's from Ca or Az.

    But it will earn you a few cheers from New Mexico.

  25. Most of H&R's posts about law enforcement make me laugh. This one...scares me.

    What are the odds Hero of Law Enforcement Arpaio starts making noises about "New Times'" complicity in some sort of solicitation for prostitution case?

    He doesn't even have to do that. The plan, as I see it, is simple:

    1. Get the names and addresses of anyone who could be a threat to Arpaio and his pals--many of whom read New Times, the only paper in Phoenix that ciriticizes him.

    2. Use Arpaio's SWAT teams to commit acts of terror against them, the trick being to make them look like drug busts gone wrong.

    3. Repeat 2 'til the opposition shuts up or leaves town for good.

  26. *criticizes

  27. Regarding comments about living in Phoenix: Oh I wish I could get out of this place. Believe me, its worse than LA or NYC for quality of life. Just try to bike, walk or drive through neighborhoods any smeltering hot morning without breathing in the dust, dirt and gasoline fumes of leaf blowers under the cloud of commuter smog. And look around you: everywhere there is scattered debrie and filth and unfortunate transients trying to survive on begging and petty crime.

    Community planning is done by and for the benefit of developers disrupting old established neighborhoods and creating massive urban sprawl and more dirty commuter air and higher taxes for new roads and no money for repairing old roads.

    Government is so corrupt that even the county college administrators are corrupt. But, no one seems to care.

    People here in general are ignorant or careless about caring for others, good government, civic responsibility or human rights. They are selfish, prejudicedd and devious with every person for thyself attitude.

    Get me out of here!

  28. Jesus, Brooks, don't give him any ideas...


    Unfortunately, cases like this justify the use of pervasive spy cameras.

    There's nothing like the close-up of a SWAT thug's mug sneering at innocent victims from a burning house to bring swift retaliation like a gang of prisoners swarming to stomp on a pedophile.

    If they won't film themselves the way police do with cameras on the dashboard, someone else needs to do it. After a few instances of exposure things should quiet down absent attempts to prohibit even recording such events.

    In that case, quit your job, work for Blackwater as a an entry level Snitch and work your way up to Chief Rambo with a glorified muscle truck paid for by a $26 million dollar contract to protect one man (Bremer).

    The no-bid government pay and benefits are great and you can pass yourself off as the Great Patriot Hero Warrior who would have done it for nothing ... they just love their jobs ... that's why they pick these type folks to bust your house down ... the government psychologists said it was necessary to maintain job satisfaction and motivation ...

  30. I used to say Phoenix is what LA would look like if you drained the Pacific Ocean. But without the good restaurants. An absolute shithole, it is.

    Tucson, on the other hand, is quite nice (if you can stand the heat) and I miss living there terribly.

  31. I know that schadenfreude is a pretty shameful emotion to have, but I would love to see Sherrif Joe on his lunch break in pink underwear eating a green bologna sandwich at the side of a road chained to his fellow prisoners. Tin pot fascist.

  32. Just moved to phoenix a few months ago. Total shit box. Garbage and bums everywhere, shitty drivers (who never signal), and I feel like I'm being poisoned by the air.

  33. Having lived in a particularly corrupt small city that is still particularly corrupt I would say that the locals are not easier to avoid than the feds.

    Except that you are no longer living in said city. You were able to move to another locale, one that is presumably less corrupt, without giving up citizenship, the rule of law, monetary stability or other privileges of living in the US.

    Imagine if Sheriff Joe was President Joe. Avoiding the long arm of Arpaio would be much, much more difficult.

  34. Apparently, this is now being picked up by the national MSM. Even the New Time's old rival, the Arizona Republic(an) did a story on it. The online article has a comments section, and its interesting to see that about 70% of the comments are in favor of the New Times. Another 20% keep repeating the "They (NT) broke the law" mantra - my favorite quote was "Only criminals need fear the Law" (Really? Tell that to the Native Americans, the slaves, all female citizens prior to Suffrage, etc., etc., etc.). The other 10% of the comments come form the usual fringe of morons and lunatics - those so afraid of poor brown people that they'll tolerate any abuse of power as long as it crushes 'illegals' in the process, and those who merely don't like NT's content and think it deserves to be shut down. The latter are the worst, IMHO - willing to see all manner of tyranny imposed as long as it stifles anything offensive to them ("So what if the Brown Shirts burned down the newspaper office and lynched the publishers on the spot. They printed smut anyway.").

    And, yes, Tucson is definitely nicer than Phoenix (though eventually the two cities will merge into a single massive sprawl of shiny stripmalls and 'garage door' housing developments - assuming we don't run out of water first). We only have 3 seasons here - hot, damn hot, and freakin' blast furnace, but also no earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes or blizzards, and the 'floods' we have about once a decade last for all of 6 hours. Despite the continually embarassing government and the lousy drivers (though no one driving around here is actually from Arizona), its a pretty decent place to live.

  35. Isn't Phoenix a bit like Florida, in that many older people retire there? Perhaps retirees are confortable with a tough law-and-order scheme. Perhaps they are uninterested in investing in infrastructure. Perhaps, also, on this specific topic, they do not understand the technical implications of their subpeona.

  36. """People here in general are ignorant or careless about caring for others, good government, civic responsibility or human rights. They are selfish, prejudicedd and devious with every person for thyself attitude."""

    I hate to tell you, but more than half of the voting American citizenry is like that. They voted for Bush in '04

  37. Yeah, there are a lot of retirees (plus 'snow birds' that migrate just for the winter, consuming space and resources but having no vestment in the community), along with a massive influx of Californians fleeing the high cost of living (and driving up Arizona's in the process). Its a 'perfect storm' of political malaise, narcism, and self-righteousness.

  38. so who is this cunt and why does he operate with impunity? does he have pictures of all the local pols diddling cows or something?

  39. I have always, ALWAYS seen the people lauded as "tough" get their panties in a bunch over the most frivolous garbage. Perhaps it's that time o the month for Arpaio?

  40. People get the government they deserve.

    Joe Arpaio gets voted in as sheriff over and over because (not despite) he's a hyper aggressive evil clown. For whatever reason, voters down there seem to dig that shit.

    Try policing like that up here and see how far it gets you. There'd be angry villagers with torches and pitchforks gathered at the cop shop.

    Thank goodness for winter weather. It drives much of the scum south.

  41. So Arpaio's ass is chapped because they published his home address? That's quite easily available to the public right here: http://starpas.azcc.gov/scripts/cgiip.exe/WService=wsbroker1/names-detail.p?name-id=02473182&type=CORPORATION

  42. Imagine if Sheriff Joe was President Joe. Avoiding the long arm of Arpaio would be much, much more difficult.

    You would have to move to Canada.

  43. Mr. Nice Guy:

    You are correct in pointing out that state and local authorities can become tinpot tyrants too. However, I take issue with your assertion that the feds can set them straight. That doesn't seem to be happening! It's the job of the local citizenry to do that! In other words, it all comes down to YOU!


  44. Wine Commonsewer: You are spot on regarding Phoenix. Used to be wonderful but now? I'll take a pass.

  45. Re: Why Arpaio is still in office -

    Sheriffs are elected in Arizona, and I'm not sure what the process of removing them is aside from losing an election. Arpaio ever losing is unlikely because he portrays himself as just hating criminals and wanting to use the most authoritarian measures possible to go after only them, and as most of us here know the average American (and definitely Arizonan) finds it heartwarming to see heavily armed and militarized police knocking down other people's doors. It helps a lot that the media is really sycophantic towards him. He is like a miniature version of any right-wing authoritarian leader. I was shocked to see that him arresting the New Times people was actually on the front page of the Arizona Republic's website. Nice of them to care, finally.

    It would take a long time to go detail all of the things he has done that should have caused the public to turn against him, but here is a quick list:
    -Entrapment on a troubled kid to set him up in a plot to kill Arpaio himself.
    -Having 8 full-time officers in his staff just investigating threats against him, not even being his security detail.
    -Burning down that family's house and killing their dog.
    -Generally sending TV cameras along with him to personally arrest people for minor crimes that stoke public outrage, like people leaving their dog in the car in the summer.
    -And so on...

    Thank God he didn't run for governor like he once planned to. He may have actually done more harm in that office.

  46. People here in general are ignorant or careless about caring for others, good government, civic responsibility or human rights. They are selfish, prejudicedd and devious with every person for thyself attitude.

    That's cuz they all moved there from Californicate!


  47. B, I've loved Tucson since I was 16. It is growing though and I still don't live there, though I have friends and relatives who do.

  48. Joe Arpaio is primarily interested in promoting the name and interests of Joe Arpaio.

    He's an asshole.

  49. Kwix, LOL. You have a point, and while you cannot get away from the IRS, by simple virtue of distance and dilution the feds are not in your face on a daily basis.

  50. Hi Gene, I'll pass too, but I have been considering the area southeast of Tucson.

  51. Phoenix is a great place to live if you like it hot and dry and can stay out of trouble with the law.

    My relatives in Phoenix used to think the world of Sheriff joe, but they've soured on him. It's a more libertarian place than most of America, and I think Sheriff joe's days are numbered.

  52. This Sheriff doesn't pander for campaign contributions from the business communities, globalists or Internationalists? So because he doesn't comply with their demands, as they do, they desire him out of office? He is an ongoing danger and worst nightmare to the corporate agenda for illegal discount workers. Now he has a free hand to arrest and not no longer restrained by 287 G federal law, but can use the powers of state laws detain illegal aliens and the criminal elements amongst them. We need more Joe's tent cities and his inmate cuisine of bologna sandwiches, since being subjected to this type of incarceration will deter the most ardent inmate? Nationwide we need more inflexible officers of the law, who will not prostrate to the open border lunatics? Not the soft clean hands of manipulated cops who don't make waves, as they are contemplating looking towards an easy road to retirement. SEEING THAT OUR OWN ELECTED GOVERNMENT, REFUSES TO ENFORCE THE 1986 LAWS (IRCA), THERE OATHS TO PROTECT US FROM OUR ENEMIES FOREIGN & DOMESTIC. THEN COURAGEOUS POLICE OFFICERS MUST CARRY OUT DUTIES OF WHICH AMERICAN'S VOTED FOR?

    However the corrupt lawmakers around the nation, have not been able to undermine E-Verify? AS YET? YES! Legal Immigration matters? We should announce to the world that newcomers are welcome, if they come through the front door? We only need those immigrants with specialized skills, such as computer engineers, scientists, doctors and those with highly recommended credentials as developed nations? America has a sovereign right who we choose to settle here? What we don't need is pregnant women slipping across our border, for instant citizenship of their child or destitute illegal aliens whose cannot exist without taxpayer welfare, chain family migration? We don't need in these country illegal recipients who need free health care, education when we already ignore our own people who live in poverty? We need to enforce the 1986 immigration reform law (IRCA), not cripple it for the sake of parasite businesses that live of the slavery of millions of foreign national workers. Seeing that the business world are screaming for more Guest Workers, they should take on the responsibility of paying for their health care and education, instead of dropping sick illegal labor of at the emergency room. to, leave the hospital bill for taxpayers. Instead of expecting the American people to pay for the enormous burden, they should pay separate expenditures for every illegal foreign national and their families.

    We need to execute now, a complete war immigration chest containing mandated E-Verify for every worker--NOT REPRESSED--, or 287 G, local police arrest of foreign workers, the Rep.Duncan Hunter original national fence, instead of chopping it down to single line. We need enforcement of our laws, with harsh penalties for violating them. We need politicians we can trust, instead of those elected such as Sen.Reid, Speaker Pelosi, Feinstein and a whole list, who can be graded as Anti-American worker, anti-sovereignty, pro-illegal immigration and compromising the Rule of Law. Submerge them in your anger and frustration at 202-224-3121 Find out the buried truth at NUMBERSUSA, JUDICIAL WATCH & CAPSWEB, for overpopulation facts.

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