Officer’s Demise Causes Deep Problems for Joe Arpaio
When sheriff’s deputy Ramon Charley Armendariz hanged himself, he left behind a house full of questions.
Among the items at his house were a stash of drugs, evidence bags from old cases, hundreds of fake IDs and thousands of his video-recorded traffic stops that were withheld in a racial-profiling case against his boss, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Now, the quest for answers has raised the possibility that a yet-to-be-determined number of his cases could be thrown out and has refocused attention on Arpaio and his department, already under close watch by a federal monitor in the profiling case.
The judge overseeing the case has raised the prospect that Armendariz may have been shaking down people living in the U.S. illegally during traffic stops, and the top prosecutor in Phoenix described the situation as a “mess” as his staff begins to sort it out.