Arpaio critics walk out on board meeting in protest

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by Mike Gertzman

Video report by Frank Camacho

Posted on February 1, 2012 at 3:10 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 1 at 3:39 PM

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Should Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio resign?

PHOENIX -- There was another dramatic walkout at the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday.

Members of Citizens for a Better Arizona, which has been calling for Sheriff Joe Arpaio to resign, abruptly left the meeting in anger.

The group's leaders expected to have their say, but it did not happen that way. It was supposed to be an unprecedented public airing of the alleged abuses by Arpaio, instead it turned out to be the latest chapter in the ongoing political battle involving the beleaguered sheriff and a group of his sharpest critics.

The group claims that the chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, Max Wilson, had agreed to allow public comments against Arpaio.

"His intent was to give a dog and pony show to give a forum for Bill Montgomery and Jerry Sheridan to come in and say, 'Hey everything's good, everything's been taken care of, that's all in the past, let's sweep it under the rug,'" explained Republican attorney Chad Snow, co-founder of Citizens for a Better Arizona.

Montgomery is the Maricopa County attorney. Sheridan is the chief deputy at the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

Maricopa County Supervisor Fulton Brock attempted to get the group to return to the meeting, but they refused and instead marched a few blocks to the U.S. atorney's office where they gathered to demand the federal investigation of Arpaio's office be completed as soon as possible.

In the meantime, the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors meeting continued and supporters of Arpaio had their say.

"We will stand behind him and if you want to get rid of Joe Arpaio there is a simple way to do it, it's called the election box and it's coming up in November so take your best shot because we're gonna be behind him 100 percent," said Blaine Dunning with the Red Mountain Tea Party.

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