On October 18, 2007, evening, the armed deputies from the Maricopa County went ahead and handcuffed and arrested Mike Lacey and Jim Larkin in fear of the selective enforcement unit. The two were removed from their home and put inside SUVs that were unmarked, dark tinted windows, and they had license plates from Mexico. Later it was discovered they were in jail that were managed by Arpaio.
Arpaio was the same people that carried out the arrest, and they instigated it too. The one who considered himself ”American toughest sheriff” did not like the story that had been posted in the Phoenix news-times stories that exposed some of the misdeeds that he was participating in. The phoenix news-times reported on how the sheriff’s office was being poorly managed and the financial irregularities that were taking place in Arpaio. It went ahead to explain how the sheriff was abusing the power he has, the health conditions in the jails of Arpaio, the mistreatment the inmates were getting in prison, and how the Latinos were being detained without following the constitution.
When Lacey was asked by jail inmates why they were in prison the only response they had was writing. In less than 24hours Lacey and Larkin were released because of the loud national outcry and all the charges were dropped. The illegal detention of Lacey and Larkin was the start of the prolonged court battle that followed, and they were battling the first amendment right and the abuse of power that was taking place. The court stated that the arrest on Lacey and Larkin was invalid because during the capture the prosecutor didn’t follow the required legal procedure. The decision paved the way for the settlement of Lacey and Larkin to be paid $3.7 million in 2013 by the Maricopa County.
Lacey and Larkin gave the money to the Frontera funds, a group that benefited the Hispanic community. In their early age they were taught that they should give the less fortunate. And they could not think of a better group that deserved the money more than the Frontera funds that cared about the Mexican immigrants.
What Are Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin Up to
Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin recently founded the Frontera Fund and Front Page Confidential in retaliation to an arrest that violated their first amendment rights. The two had written an article in the Phoenix New Times about issues in the sheriff’s office. The sheriff at the time, Sheriff Arpaio considered himself one of the toughest in the country. He was very vocal about his stance on immigration and stood to the far right on many other matters.
After the article by Lacey and Larkin was published, the two received a subpoena to appear in court. They did not appear since they believed it did not hold ground. They were then arrested and a court battle ensued. The case turned out in Lacey and Larkin’s favor and they won a settlement for their trouble.
Following these events, the two established a fund and started a news reporting site to help to advocate for and protect the first amendment rights of journalists and citizens of the USA. The fund currently works to help support organizations fighting for the same cause. The Front Page Confidential focuses reporting on various news that hits current sensitive political topics. One of the main topics being related to the first amendment. They also cover issues of religion in politics, fake news sex trafficking, hate speech and other front-page issues of the day.