Wednesday, February 12
Kalmanovitz Appellate Courtroom, King Hall room 1001
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
The Case Against Sheriff Joe Arpaio (Melendres v. Arpaio): State and Local Immigration in Maricopa County, Arizona Run Amok
The absence of federal comprehensive immigration reform has led to increased cases of racial profiling by law enforcement, as local officers see fit to take enforcement of federal immigration law into their own hands because of frustration with federal immigration enforcement. In Arizona, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio and his deputies have gained a national reputation for targeting Latinos and unlawfully detaining, questioning, and arresting them for the sole purpose of investigating their immigration status, in violation of federal law. As a result, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office's (MCSO) rampant racial profiling has created a culture of fear in Maricopa County among the Latino community, citizens and non-citizens alike.
On behalf of a class of U.S. citizen and legally present Latinos who have been unlawfully racially profiled and questioned about their immigration status, MALDEF brought a lawsuit against Sheriff Arpaio, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, and Maricopa County for exceeding his authority to enforce immigration law in violation of his MOU agreement with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) under §287(g). Additionally, MALDEF alleges that the patterns and practices of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office violates the plaintiffs'' rights under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and several provisions of the Arizona Constitution. http://www.maldef.org/immigration/litigation/melendres_v_arpaio/
Ramirez was one of the lawyers representing the class. After the trial, the district court ruled that the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office (MCSO) and Sheriff Arpaio, had engaged in a pattern and practice of unconstitutional treatment of Latina/os, including U.S. citizens, in its immigration enforcement efforts. In essence, the court found that the MCSO's aggressive immigration enforcement activities violated the constitutional rights of Latina/os on a mass scale, including the rights of lawful immigrants and U.S. citizens. The court ordered extensive remedies, including the appointment of a monitor to oversee the MSCO and ensure that it comply with the court order.
SPEAKER: Nancy Ramirez, Western Regional Counsel for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund
Nancy Ramirez is the Western Regional Counsel for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), the nation's leading Latino civil rights law firm. From 2005 to 2007, Ms. Ramirez was the Executive Director of the Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice (LACLJ), a nonprofit community law office in Boyle Heights that provides free legal services to indigent residents of Los Angeles County. From 2001 to 2005 she was the LACLJ's Managing Attorney for the Consumer Unit representing victims of consumer fraud. She also represented victims of domestic violence in their family law cases. Ms. Ramirez was the Director of Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez's Orange County and Washington D.C. offices from 1997 to 1999 and Director of Outreach for California's 2000 Census Campaign. In addition, she taught legal writing at the University of Southern California Law School in 2003-2004. She is a 1990 graduate of Harvard Law School and 1987 graduate of U.C. Berkeley.
SPONSORS: UC Davis School of Law, IFHA Cluster on Temporary Migration (UC Davis), La Raza Law Students Association