Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey continue to fight against Arpaio through their Frontera Fund organisation

Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey continue to fight against Arpaio through their Frontera Fund organisation.

In the American history, there have been many controversial presidential pardons. Summing up to the past is the recent pardon of Joe Arpaio by President Donald Trump. Joe Arpaio who termed himself as Americas toughest sheriff was arrested due to ordering the unlawful arrest of two journalists residing in Maricopa County, Arizona; Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey. The two are the owners of Village Voice; a magazine that uncovers unlawful and injustices in the Maricopa County.

The arrest of Larkin and Lacey was made about ten years ago when Maricopa County Selective Enforcement Unit agents came knocking at their doors and arresting them. This order to the agents came from none other than Joe Arpaio. The reason being? Well, they were accused of uncovering an ongoing court investigation.

Lacey; the executive editor and Larkin; the Chief Executive Officer of the Phoenix New Times publishing company had released a piece about the research of the jury in a Village Voice Media newspaper. The newspaper was issued the same day they were arrested. Unknown to them, the court was investigating them.

Joe Arpaio was angered by the overly excessive coverage of his law enforcement approaches. Since being elected to office, Arpaio used the law to define the Sheriff department. He was known for ordering his agents to unlawfully racial profile women and inmates.

These injustices had been covered by other newspapers, but nothing was done to stop the Arpaio and his agents. During his time as the head of the Maricopa County Sheriff Department, many cases were heard concerning illegal administration. Read more: Michael Lacey | Crunchbase and Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund

In 2011, the U.S District Judge named Murray Snow ordered Arpaio to stop the heinous acts of detaining immigrants without sufficient evidence that they are immigrants.

A lawsuit was later filed in 2011 accusing Arpaio of keeping inmates in Tent City in a vile environment. This lead to him being charged with defiling the rights of Latinos and other Hispanic groups.

However, Arpaio did not heed the charges but continued with his followers to racial profile and exchanging Latinos over to immigration agents. When asked why he did not follow the court’s order, Arpaio blamed miscommunication as the factor leading to it.

People’s outcry leads Larkin and Lacey to expose Arpaio and his agents to the public. This lead to their arrest and detainment. The Americans were angered by this and this lead to their release within 24 days. They then filed a lawsuit which was settled by receiving $3.75 million from the Maricopa County. Larkin and Lacey used the settlement funds to create Frontera Fund; a foundation that helps Latinos and the Hispanic groups to protect the members’ First Amendment rights.

Born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona, Jim Larkin joined the Arizona State University where he met Michael Lacey. Lacey was born in Newark, New Jersey but then moved to Arizona to go to the same university Larkin went. Lacey later dropped out of university to start a publishing firm named the Phoenix New Times.

The company published pieces concerning the antiwar protests were done by students at Arizona State University. Jim Larkin also dropped out and joined him. This was a start of the captivating career for them as they majored in investigative journalism.

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