Lisa Allen, Sheriff Joe Arpaio's Longtime Spokeswoman, Forgets Herself in AZ Republic Letter to Editor
Lisa Allen certainly knows the answer to the question she posed in a letter to the editor published in Saturday's Arizona Republic.
Image: Ray Stern Lisa Allen wonders in a Saturday letter to the editor why people criticize Sheriff Arpaio's crime sweeps, but not those of Phoenix police. She answered her own question in 2009.
In the letter, the longtime spokeswoman for Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio congratulates the Phoenix Police Department for a "job well done" in a recent crime sweep that netted 180 arrests, then notes that the "Arizona Republic and others were quick to criticize" the sheriff's past crime sweeps, "saying the sheriff only does these operations to arrest illegal aliens."
She claims that the Arpaio and PPD sweeps were "no different in application and goal..." then ponders, "So, why does one agency get credit and the other condemnation?"
Yet as a secret recording makes clear, Allen believed in July of 2009 that a crime sweep Arpaio had ordered for the Chandler area at the time would invite criticism, due to rising public discourse and concern about racial profiling.
The U.S. Department of Justice launched a lawsuit in December 2011 against the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, accusing Arpaio of overseeing systemic discrimination against Hispanics.
Allen made the statements in 2009 to a trusted deputy chief, Frank Munnell, who was recording her surreptitiously.
In the recording, Allen tells Munnell she's tired of the SB1070 issue and how "this racial profiling thing is really ratcheting up" because of some comment made by recalled State Senator Russell Pearce.
Allen notes that there's "all kinds of talk about racial profiling and how it's got to stop ... and we're just walking right into it."
She wonders aloud, "You know what bothers me is, why are we doing this? Why are we going there? Is there a law enforcement reason?"
"Course not," Munnell tells her. He explains that the crime sweep is done for media attention and to "reinforce the sheriff's stance that he'll do what the fuck he wants."
"Oh," Allen says.
"Know what I mean?"
Today we asked Allen if her 2009 statements did not, as they appear to, answer the question she poses in her Saturday letter to the editor.