IS “PICKED” THE SAME AS A “RANDOM DRAW?”
by Sharon Rondeau
(Jun. 18, 2015) — An article cited by The Post & Email on Wednesday reporting the assignment of U.S. District Court Judge G. Murray Snow to a 2010 lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Justice against Maricopa County, AZ Sheriff Joe Arpaio has been found in the Wayback Machine.
When opening the link from Snow’s Wikipedia page, a blank page containing the url appears.
Snow was selected to preside over a different case filed in late 2007 by Latino plaintiffs represented by the ACLU against the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) alleging that they were discriminated against in traffic stops and “immigration sweeps” for racial reasons. The case, Melendres, et al v. Arpaio, et al, was decided in the plaintiffs’ favor in May 2013, which the MCSO appealed.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals sided with the plaintiffs but opined that the court-appointed MCSO monitor’s role should be limited to overseeing the correction of constitutional violations against the plaintiffs.
In March, through his attorneys, Arpaio and his chief deputy, Jerry Sheridan, admitted to having failed to adhere precisely to Snow’s orders and methods. With the intent to avoid a civil contempt trial, Arpaio offered to place $100,000, the equivalent of a year’s salary, in an account to settle the plaintiffs’ claims, a fact omitted by The New York Times in a June 15, 2015 column. Snow refused the offer and began the trial on April 21.
During the hearings, Snow expressed that he intended to award the plaintiffs some type of relief, whether it be wide-ranging or “limited.” He also ordered that materials gleaned from an investigation Arpaio had been conducting with a confidential informant, Dennis Montgomery, be turned over to the monitor, Robert Warshaw.
The mainstream media, including The New York Times, has claimed that the Montgomery investigation sought to demonstrate that Snow and the U.S. Department of Justice were working together against Arpaio and the MCSO. On the witness stand, Sheridan denied that Snow or his wife were investigated.
The Times and others also characterized a different investigation Arpaio’s attorney launched as one probing Snow’s wife, when in fact, the inquiry was into the credibility of those who alleged that the comments were made.
The disappeared article on the 2010 case, published by KTAR News in Phoenix in September of that year, was headlined with, “Judge picked for records lawsuit against sheriff” and was punctuated with “Snow was assigned the case by a random draw.”
In early June 2011, the U.S. Department of Justice and MCSO reached an agreement by which documentation requested by Justice would be produced, after which the lawsuit was withdrawn.
The Wayback Machine indicates that the article was archived four times between July 19, 2011 and January 17, 2015. At the time of the second web “crawl” on July 19, 2011, the article was intact, as it subsequently was on March 5, 2012.
At the time of the last archiving on January 17, 2015, only the url remained.
The Post & Email was unable to find a “search” box on the KTAR website to seek the article or others from the same time frame.
Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news. She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.