Sunday, December 21, 2008

Arpaio foes arrested for clapping

Four people associated with the anti-Arpaio group Maricopa Citizens for Safety and Accountability, were arrested on Wednesday for standing and applauding a speaker at the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors meeting. The East Valley Tribune notes that:
A double standard clearly was in effect during the Board of Supervisors meeting Wednesday. At one point, public-transit advocate Blue Crowley used part of his public-comment time allotment to sing a birthday song to [MCBoS chairman Andy] Kunasek. Kunasek blushed and several people applauded, but none was ordered to leave or threatened with arrest.

However, Kunasek, deputies and security officers refused to tolerate applause after the anti-Arpaio speech minutes later.
The criminal clappers were charged with "suspicion of disorderly conduct and trespassing."

This brings the arrests of MCSA members to eight for the week and nine for the last four months.

Four other members of MCSA were arrested on Monday, after a group of 20 went to Andy Kunasek's office to talk with him and he refused to meet with them. Sheriff's deputies asked them to leave and arrested the four who refused.

The other arrest was MCSA co-founder Randy Parrez, who was arrested on September 29 outside a Board of Supervisors meeting on similar charges--suspicion of trespassing and disorderly conduct.

All but one of the members of the Board of Supervisors are Republicans. The Tribune article quotes Supervisor Max Wilson (R-District 4) as saying, "I don’t tell the police how to do their job. I don’t instruct them to do it or when to do it. They’re professionals at it and that’s the way they handle it." The lone Democrat, Mary Rose Wilcox (D-District 5), however, stated that she thought the arrests were excessive and that she would talk to security about it.

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