Monday, April 25, 2011

Arpaio deputies faulted in ID-theft case

Arpaio deputies faulted in ID-theft case

Maricopa County sheriff's deputies violated the constitutional rights of two Hispanic men when they stopped and detained the men as part of a 2009 identity-theft investigation at a landscaping company, according to a federal judge's ruling Monday.

U.S. District Judge David G. Campbell ruled that Sheriff Joe Arpaio's deputies had no reason to stop Julian and Julio Mora before dawn on Feb. 11, 2009, nor any reason to make a warrantless arrest when deputies detained the Moras for nearly three hours.

The only reason the arresting deputies had to detain the men, according to Campbell's ruling, was because Julian Mora told deputies that he worked at Handyman Maintenance Inc., where sheriff's deputies were searching for suspected identity thieves.

"It's the first test of their workplace raid policy, a plan they repeated many times," said Pochoda, who added that the ruling could serve as a deterrent. "It's a very important win."

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