Deputy's Death Opens the Door Onto a World of Corruption in Sheriff Joe's MCSO

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MCSO Deputy Ramon Charley Armendariz, in a shot taken from his Facebook profile

If there never had been a monitor appointed by Judge G. Murray Snow in the ACLU's big civil rights case, Melendres v. Arpaio, it's unlikely that we would know as much as we do about late MCSO Detective Ramon Charley Armendariz.

And yet, Armendariz, who the Sheriff's Office says took his own life by hanging May 8, remains a riddle, even as he points in death toward a panoply of grotesque corruption.

The 40-year-old was a member of Sheriff Joe Arpaio's infamous Human Smuggling Unit and trained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement under the so-called 287(g) program, back in the days when the federal government had given de facto approval to Arpaio's transformation of the MCSO into a mini-version of ICE.

Armendariz, an El Paso native who proudly stated in court that his first language was Spanish, participated in several of Arpaio's immigrant-hunting sweeps.

See, Armendariz testified during the 2012 Melendres civil trial, mainly because he was involved, indirectly, in the detention of Manuel Nieto Jr. and his sister Velia Meraz during a March 2008 immigration sweep in Cave Creek.

Armendariz got into a verbal confrontation with Nieto and Meraz, both American citizens, while Armendariz had two men cuffed in the parking lot of a convenience store.

Nieto and Meraz say the Mexican music blaring from their van was what drew Armendariz's attention to them. Armendariz called for backup and signaled to other cops to follow the pair after they obeyed his order to leave.

MCSO deputies stopped the van in front of the auto-repair business owned by the pair's father, drawing their weapons and pointing them at Nieto, whom they roughly pulled from the car.

The deputies eventually left without citing the pair, who later became plaintiffs in the Melendres suit.

Asked during the trial why he thought the MCSO arrested a high number of Latinos, Armendariz answered that it had to do with Arizona's being a "Latino state" and that "the majority of our population is Latino."

Currently, the total Latino population of Arizona is a little more than 30 percent.

Why were his pull-over rates so high, compared to some other deputies, plaintiff's counsel wondered?

It had to do with his "high work ethic," Armendariz replied.

Evidently, Armendariz was prolific in other areas as well.


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84 comments
MPmcso
MPmcso

Theyre destroying evidence of something much bigger, these people are fucking sickos, go to phx and ask around on the streets about MP over the last decade..... they need to put a stop to these sickfucks... they need to look at hendershoot

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

According to the AP, the plaintiffs in Melendres are asking Judge Snow for even tougher penalties against the old man.

And MontyPug will likely toss all Armendariz's cases.

Roger Morris
Roger Morris

The smoking gun to the end of the Arpaio 150,000,000 million dollar to racist too fail two for one Andrew and the MCSO gangs days. Breathtaking Abuse of the Constitution. The Fourth Avenue Reich is finally will come out. Arpaio is sweating. You can see it.

tm98989898
tm98989898

A psychiatrist, psychologist would have a field day with diagnosing why Arpaio likes to put males into pink undies, abuse them in harsh conditions, deny them medical care, harken back to them good ole ball and chain days of the 1930's! Anyone who finds glee in sexual sadism has more issues than "Carter has Liver Pills"!

tm98989898
tm98989898

Sadists come in all colors, cultures, political backgrounds, and where do sadists go to practice their trade? Law enforcement, corrections, military etc., sadly these few bad apples, deviants make others look bad, Arpaio has a Marquis De Sade type leaning behavior he seems to relish, enjoy abusing others whom he holds in contempt, whom he has authority over a classic sadist!

Daron Nikki Petit
Daron Nikki Petit

Marco gets it. I'm no supporter of armed agents of the state, but illegal aliens are profiteers of the shakedown of taxpayers, so if they get a little shakedown of their own........pffft

Marco Cruz
Marco Cruz

hey andy did you even read the article? im sooo sure that the cocaine, meth, and heroine all came from innocent "latinos" he was shaking down for being just regular upstanding contributors to US society.

Marco Cruz
Marco Cruz

this can happen in any police department or sheriff's office. this is getting more attention merely because it is in maricopa county. if arpaio wasnt in office right now, this would more than likely gotten little to no attention because he is hispanic, and hey, if youre brown, you can do no wrong.

Daron Nikki Petit
Daron Nikki Petit

Emmanuel- Relax, I'm not the problem, nor am I a fool. Read the headline..... BTW, Tell me more about MY agenda.......

Bryan Jorgenson Wallis Hardie
Bryan Jorgenson Wallis Hardie

Is this the guy that "committed suicide"? Sounds exactly like a TV show in which the cop actually didn't "commit suicide".

Gary Trayler
Gary Trayler

Illegal Mexicans do not make a culture also. If they want to be in the US they can follow US law. If Americans go into mexico illegal they get thrown under the jail. I know of no other police and government as corrupt as mexico's. So go back to mexico if you don't like it

Emanuel Gonzalez
Emanuel Gonzalez

Seriously? C'mon man! You are the problem! Idiots who can't read beyond their own agenda. This story clearly mentioned at least 4 people who were victims and were US citizens. You're such a fool.

Emanuel Gonzalez
Emanuel Gonzalez

A few bad apples!? How many countless law suites and scandals make it more than a few an actually classify as a culture in your book?

Gary Trayler
Gary Trayler

MCSO and Joe are the only things that keep Arizona from being over-run with illegal Mexicans. You are going to find a few bad apples in every bunch but you don't throw out all the apples

Johnny Rychlicki III
Johnny Rychlicki III

Everyone associated with MCSO is fascist swine ... but they would all reply "we're just doing our job," so were the Nazis.

drmichaelhardy
drmichaelhardy

"Armendariz, whom the Sheriff's Office says took his own life"

Please: You would write "They said _he_ took his own life", _not_ "They said _him_ took his own life."  Therefore "who", not "whom".

(I've never understood how people can have trouble with something so simple.)

Robert Foster
Robert Foster

And this is a shocker. There are crooked cop everywhere. Not that it is right but it is out there.

Cozz
Cozz topcommenter

I'm still trying to figure out how anyone with an once of pride, honor or integrity could work for such a corrupt & sleazy organization like MCSO.

Obviously having pride, honor and integrity is not a requirement for working at MCSO.

Kim Peckham
Kim Peckham

Maybe Sheriff Joe has a touch of short guy syndrome causing him to bully Mexicans because they are smaller.

Barbara Hoskinson
Barbara Hoskinson

BIG SURPRISE!!! NOT, everyone knows how corrupt they are except the idiots that keep voting Arpaio into office

Mario Aragon
Mario Aragon

Not quite shock news. Pretty much expected in his regime. I'm sure not the only people they shake down.

Daron Nikki Petit
Daron Nikki Petit

Andy- Which straw man said that being latino means you are involved in illegal activity. Go......

Andy Sargent
Andy Sargent

Obviously you didnt read the article or dont understand the term "Shaking Down". Being Latino doesn't mean you're involved in illegal activity.

Lee Bain
Lee Bain

The title of this article is pretty misleading.

Jeff Turille
Jeff Turille

MCSO stepped across the "thin blue line" years ago. You should not have to break the law to enforce it. It amazes me that people still elect that man.

Daron Nikki Petit
Daron Nikki Petit

Shaking down people involved in illegal activity? How dare they!

dennis20
dennis20 topcommenter

Am I the only one here that suspects this was YPS? 

anonymous
anonymous

“Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed: everything else is public relations.”  - George Orwell...

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

misleading article title Stephen. Armendariz' death will do nothing but pose more questions and hide the truth. since he isnt here anymore to answer for himself, all he did was leave unanswered questions (and a lot of them) for instance........how deep did it go? what info did he have? these are questions we will never get answers for. and as for him opening the door to Joe's corruption???? hell..........we all knew about that. with the death of Armendariz, now Joe has a scapegoat that he will try to hang everything on (you know.because Dave isnt around anymore and the dead cant contradict him) it was a good article, so dont get me wrong, but it most assuredly isnt opening any doors to uncovering Joe's corruption. its a shame the guy died, because his death is an out for Joe.      

"okay your honor, profiling may have happened.......but it was Armendariz.......not my policies, crimes may have occured, but it was Armendariz.........not me. evidence may have been tampered with, but it was Aemendariz...........not me"

Flyer9753
Flyer9753 topcommenter

@MaskedMagician1967 They are also asking for all the body cam footage and eyeglass footage they found at his home (over 900 hours) to be admitted as evidence in both the current case but the still pending DOJ case.

WALKLIKEADUCK
WALKLIKEADUCK

yeah well both fields are full of quacks, so that really isn't saying much.  Now, quit fantasizing about men in pink undies already and keep it moving,

stephen.lemons
stephen.lemons moderator writer

@drmichaelhardy

As Ed McMahon liked to say, "You are correct, sir!"


Thanks for pointing it out, Doc. Correction is being made.

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

Cozz, having pride, honor and integrity isn't a requirement for virtually all public servants. Some (a select few) actually try to do their job (Sheila Polk is an example).

WatchingMCSO
WatchingMCSO

That thin blue line was gone years ago, I agree.  But their new motto is, "Lie & Deny" (Instead of To Protect & Serve)

GayPrideParade
GayPrideParade

I think you are right!

YPS did peg your gay relationship with Mr. Lemons. It takes one to know one, so they say.

Good call, Mr Gilman!

dennis20
dennis20 topcommenter

@danzigsdaddy I've had the same thoughts. But the problem is he was rarely alone. That includes his own video taping. Also, there were stories of shake downs and money taken from people over the years but it was hard to prove. Many were deported or never given a legit citation and just disappeared because of their legal status. 

TheyCallMeMrTibbs
TheyCallMeMrTibbs

@danzigsdaddy

I disagree. This doesn't help Arpaio at all. MCSO admits they knew other deputies were taping. Means they violated the hold, destroyed more evidence. Part of Melendres ruling is that it orders restructuring of manager to patrol deputy ratio. This proves why this was needed. Also shows lack of training, supervision. You think we'd know about those tapes if there wasnt a monitor? Or that other deps were taping? Hell no. Plus all of this also goes to US Attorney, which may start own inquiry. 

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

Stuff we have no problem believing. BUT, will anything ever be done is my question. Sad to say it, but I just see it ending just like every other thing we put hope in. I think if Armendariz had NOT committed suicide..........THEN it would have possibly opened a Crack in Joe's armor

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

@TheyCallMeMrTibbs god only knows how badly i want to be proven wrong on that. lets just hope the US atty actually does something. but the way things have been going? i just cant seem to muster any faith in it

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

Hate to break it to ya Zigs, but I don't think US Attorney John Leonardo will do anything. He ruled in 2009 that Arpaio abused his power during the Maricopa County War but conflicted himself out of the abuse of power investigation. He might be conflicted here due to that ruling.

Dontbelieveit
Dontbelieveit topcommenter

@danzigsdaddy  I know how you feel............. I have a hard time putting TRUST in anybody these days .It seems if WE (the people) want to REALLY know the whatsup on anything ...WE have to find out for ourselves .....one way or the other the SHIT is about to hit the fan!!!!!!!!!!! ROTS OF RUCK mcso. Hopefully these degenerate imposters will get ALL they have coming .......INCLUDING PRISON!!!!!!!!!

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

@MaskedMagician1967 i view myself as neither a pessimist nor an optimist, i see myself as a realist. so i have to agree completely............he wont do shit

MaskedMagician1967
MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

I wouldn't mind if this (along with all of Arpaio's other abuses) are sent to a different US Attorney for review Zigs. Let that lawyer make the case.

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