Speaking Against Arpaio (From the Grave)
Attorney Mike Manning believes, or wants to believe, or needs to believe that Deborah Ann Braillard’s story will do what Scott Norberg’s story could not do, and Charles Agster’s story could not do, and Clint Yarbrough’s story could not do, and what any number of other stories could not do.
End Joe Arpaio’s stranglehold on the Maricopa County Sheriff’s job.
“I’m a product of a Pollyannaish Catholic education and I keep believing that these things are going to make a difference and people will figure it out,” Manning said last week.
He made the same argument to me back in 1999, when the county agreed to an $8.25 million settlement in the death of Scott Norberg, who died after a struggle in a restraint chair at Arpaio’s jail.
Now, after winding its way through the courts for six years, and while the trial was going on, county officials agreed to pay a settlement (as yet undisclosed but possibly millions ) to the family of Deborah Braillard. This in addition to the $1.8 million already spent on attorney’s fees in the case. Manning represented the dead woman’s family.
‘The folks that have died in our cases were pre-trial detainees,’ he told me. ‘They hadn’t been convicted of a thing. This (Braillard) was unlike any of the other cases, however. All of them were vulnerable people. But this was three days of torture.’
Over the years that Arpaio has been in office the stories of the dead have been told again and again. As they should be. All in a Pollyannaish belief, I suppose, that those who ignore the living might someday listen to the dead.