Court-Appointed Monitor To Hold Community Meeting In Guadalupe

By Jude Joffe-Block
September 24, 2014

PHOENIX — The court-appointed monitor in the racial profiling suit against the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office will hold a community meeting in the town of Guadalupe on Wednesday evening.

The small town, situated between Phoenix and Tempe, has a heavily Latino and indigenous population and a particularly tense history with the Sheriff’s office. It relies on MCSO for policing services.

Back in 2008, Guadalupe was the site of one of Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s crime suppression operations. Such sweeps were part of MCSO’s efforts to crack down on unauthorized immigrants. A federal judge later found the agency’s activities discriminated against Latino drivers.

“Arpaio descended upon this tiny little community with armed, helmeted deputies on horseback,” said Alessandra Soler of the ACLU of Arizona, one of the organizations representing plaintiffs in the racial profiling lawsuit against the Sheriff’s office. “The community felt really it was under siege.”

Soler said Wednesday’s community meeting, which is the third one run by the court-appointed monitor, Robert Warshaw, will be particularly significant.

“This is going to be an opportunity for the community to participate in a very important conversation about how to heal and how to move forward from what happened,” Soler said.

One way Guadalupe has started to move forward is by requiring Sheriff’s deputies assigned to the town to undergo a training to understand the local culture and traditions.  

Warshaw hosted his first community meeting in downtown Phoenix in June.

The community meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at Frank Elementary School, 8409 S. Avenida del Yaqui, Guadalupe, AZ 85283.

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story has been corrected to reflect that the meeting in Guadalupe will be the third one run by the court-appointed monitor.

Updated 12:13 a.m.