Honorable Michael B. Mukasey
United States Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530-0001
Dear Attorney General Mukasey:
On behalf of the Anti-Defamation League, we are writing to request that the Department of Justice open an investigation into allegations of profiling on the part of the Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff’s Office.
The impact of illegal immigration has taken a heavy toll on the State of Arizona. We have unfortunately witnessed the deterioration of civil discourse, vigilantism, the involvement of racist and neo-Nazi extremist groups, and now allegations of profiling by law enforcement authorities of both undocumented migrants and American citizens.
Recent reports in both the local and national media have alleged that the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, which entered into a 287(G) agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice, has engaged in profiling during “crime suppression sweeps” largely in areas of the county populated mainly by Latinos. In each case, both American citizens of Hispanic origin and undocumented migrants have been detained or arrested. The mayors of Phoenix and Guadalupe, Arizona, as well as other public officials, have gone on the record objecting to these sweeps.
As an agency dedicated to countering anti-Semitism and all forms of hatred, prejudice and bigotry, the Anti-Defamation League believes a federal investigation is warranted and would be consistent with the interest of fairness, justice, and of upholding the protections guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States and federal law as they apply both to American citizens and to non-citizens on American soil.
Such an investigation would also be consistent with the spirit of President George W. Bush’s February 27, 2001 Address to a Joint Session of Congress, in which he declared that racial profiling is ”wrong and we will end it in America.”
Thank you for your attention to this critically important matter.
Deborah M. Lauter
Director, Civil Rights
Arizona Regional Director
cc: Hon. Diane Humetewa, U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona
Hon. John Lewis, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Phoenix Office