Throughout the history of the United States of America, several unusual presidential pardons have been issued. One of the toughest sheriffs in America, Joe Arpaio, was recently pardoned by President Donald Trump. The sheriff, who is based in Maricopa County, Arizona, was behind the unfair imprisonment of Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin.
These two are known Village Voice owners. Around ten years ago, the Selective Enforcement Unit of Maricopa County had its agents knocking at the homes belonging to Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin. They were both arrested under the charges of disclosure of details concerning a grand-jury investigation.
Mr. Larkin is the CEO of the Village Voice Media newspaper while Mr. Lacey serves as the executive editor. On the day of their arrest, they had published an article that discussed the scrutiny of a grand jury.
Unfortunately, they did not know that the same grand jury was investigating them. Since Arpaio’s inauguration into office as Sheriff, they had been many stories claiming that his department exploited aggressive law enforcement measures. Read more: Michael Lacey | LinkedIn and Jim Larkin | Crunchbase
Arpaio had continuously been rectified on matters that were not legally admissible and those that were legal. For instance, Judge Murray Snow informed Mr. Arpaio that the detainment of immigrants as a result of suspicion was not enough reason to have them detained.
As he did not have evidence of the proper status of a detainee, the constitutional law does not permit any action towards this category of people. However, Joe Arpaio ignored all these and continued to promote racism, detaining Latinos and reporting them to the immigration services.
As the police officers operated under the orders of Arpaio, a battle between the victims of this racism and those that supported it began. Arpaio’s supporters would rally around him as they defended his deeds.
They claimed that he was the figurehead that would help in the removal of illegal immigrants from the region. Eventually, the outcry of the people opposed to Arpaio’s practices caught the attention of reporters.
Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey began exposing Joe Arpaio to the public which led to their arrest. They spent 24 days in prison. After they were released, they filed a suit against Joe Arpaio as they released additional information on his malpractices and corrupt deeds.
Maricopa County had to pay 3.75 million to settle the lawsuit on the wrongful arrest. Using this money, Jim and Michael established the Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund. It aims to distribute the settlement’s proceeds to the groups of Latin-America individuals and families residing in Arizona.
As a result of the commitment portrayed by Lacey and Larkin, Village Voice Media Holdings secured a reputation of producing advanced investigative reports as they also vastly covered on matters concerning arts, music, film, local events, and food.
By the start of 2013, Larkin and Lacey sold WM to former company executives. They were able to achieve an approximate of 9 million readers of their prints, and 56 million online viewers of their website on a monthly basis. They were able to garner numerous journalistic honors such as the Pulitzer Prize.