Arizona Crazy

Martyred cop/thief

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It's right there on video: On October 19 in a Maricopa County, Arizona, courtroom, as defense attorney Joanne Cuccia discusses her client's sentencing with Superior Court Judge Lisa Flores, court deputy Adam Stoddard walks up behind her and begins sifting through a file on her desk. He eventually removes a document, reads it, then hands it to another deputy for copying.

Cuccia's client witnessed this snooping, which was brought to the attention of Judge Flores. The Phoenix-based freelance journalist Nick Martin then acquired the video and posted it online. At a subsequent hearing on the incident, Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe ordered deputy Stoddard to apologize at a press conference for the violation of attorney-client privilege. But Stoddard works for the famed Joe Arpaio, self-described "toughest sheriff in America," and Donahoe's order set off a surreal clash between the state's courts and Arpaio's department.

Stoddard refused to apologize and instead went to jail, where he is enjoying paid leave. Arpaio, who is under federal investigation for a variety of civil rights violations, called Stoddard a "political prisoner." The day after Stoddard was locked up, 20 of his fellow deputies called in sick, resulting in delays in the county court system. The court building was evacuated after a bomb threat, at which point several police unions coincidentally held a "Free Stoddard" rally in front of the evacuated crowd. In subsequent days there were more bomb threats, as well as an evacuation due to a mysterious cloud of pepper spray. Deputies have held nightly "candlelight vigils" in Stoddard's cause.

The week after Stoddard went to jail, Arpaio filed a federal lawsuit against Maricopa's judges and county supervisors, alleging a broad conspiracy against him and his deputies. On December 8, Judge Flores reported that Arpaio's department had refused to continue bringing inmates into her courtroom for their hearings. 

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  1. My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I’m sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won’t get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there’s more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp. I’m not concerned that Mr. Crumb will go to hell or anything crazy like that! It’s just that he, like many types of religionists, seems to take it literally, take it straight…the Bible’s books were not written by straight laced divinity students in 3 piece suits who white wash religious beliefs as if God made them with clothes on…the Bible’s books were written by people with very different mindsets…in order to really get the Books of the Bible, you have to cultivate such a mindset, it’s literally a labyrinth, that’s no joke.

  2. hich was brought to the attention of Judge Flores. The Phoenix-based freelance journalist Nick Martin then acquired the video and posted it online. At a subsequent hearing o

  3. Arizona, courtroom, as defense attorney Joanne Cuccia discusses her client’s sentencin

  4. Nick Martin then acquired the video and posted it online. At a subsequent hearing on the i

  5. ologize at a press conference for the violation of attorney-client privilege. But Stoddard works for the famed Joe Arpaio, self-described “toughest sheriff in America,” and Dona

  6. n the incident, Superior Court Judge Gary Donahoe ordered deputy Stoddard to apologize at a press conference for the violation of attorney-client privilege. But Stoddard works f

  7. stem. The court building was evacuated after a bomb threat, at which point several police unions coincidentally held a “Free Stoddard” rally in front of the evacuated crowd. In subse

  8. the attention of Judge Flores. The Phoenix-based freelance journalist Nick Martin then

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