In the middle of the night during the middle of fall in 2007, Maricopa County Sheriff’s department filed into the homes of two men who contributed to stories ran in the Village Voice Media. The two men were taken by force from their homes in Phoenix and placed into unmarked SUV’s that took them to separate jails. They would later be booked into the jails by Joe Arpaio.
The men were under arrest by charges instigated through Sheriff Joe Arpaio. This sheriff was proclaimed as being one of the toughest sheriffs of all time. Due to the Phoenix New Times stories that were exposing his wrong doing’s, the sheriff was out to put an end to the stories that were running. There had been stories out about the sheriff however when the main print stories were published in actual print papers, the newspapers were quick to dismiss the stories.
The Phoenix New Times would go on record as stating the irregularities that would fall financially on the sheriff. With the stories of abuse going around, the sheriff was sure to put an end to all of them. With the sheriff on a manhunt, two men were soon to be feeling the wrath of the sheriff.
With the story that ran front cover on the Phoenix New Times, the story revealed the assault that took place on the illegal charges put in place breaking their first amendment rights. The attorney’s office was issuing grand jury subpoena’s that would ask about the people who wrote for the media as well as the readers who followed the stories being ran. Instead of giving in and giving them what they wanted, the two of them instead wrote a story about it. After the story was published, inmates would inquire as to what landed the pair of men in jail and Mike Lacey would reply, it was their writing that landed them in jail.
When the illegal holding of the two of them made headlines, the outpour of respect for the two men began to flood over the breaking of the first amendment. The illegal holding of the pair would cause a court case that would later land them $3.75 million dollars that would be used to form the Frontera Fund.