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Melendres v. Maricopa County

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

July 31, 2018

Manuel de Jesus Ortega Melendres; Jessica Quitugua Rodriguez; David Rodriguez; Velia Meraz; Manuel Nieto, Jr.; Somos America, Plaintiffs-Appellees,
v.
Maricopa County, Defendant-Appellant, United States of America, Intervenor-Plaintiff-Appellee, and Joseph M. Arpaio, Defendant.

          Argued and Submitted March 15, 2018 San Francisco, California

          Appeal from the United States District Court No. 2:07-cv-02513-GMS for the District of Arizona G. Murray Snow, District Judge, Presiding

          Richard Walker (argued), Walker & Peskind PLLC, Scottsdale, Arizona, for Defendant-Appellant.

          Andre Segura (argued), ACLU Foundation of Texas, Houston, Texas; Kathleen E. Brody and Brenda Muñoz Furnish, ACLU Foundation of Arizona, Phoenix, Arizona; Cecilia D. Wang and Katrina L. Eiland, ACLU Foundation, San Francisco, California; Stanley Young, Covington & Burling LLP, Redwood Shores, California; Anne Lai, Irving, California; Julia Gomez, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Los Angeles, California; for Plaintiffs-Appellees.

          John M. Gore (argued), Acting Assistant Attorney General; Thomas E. Chandler, Attorney; Appellate Section, Civil Rights Section, United States Department of Justice, Washington, D.C.; for Intervenor-Plaintiff-Appellee.

          Before: J. Clifford Wallace, Susan P. Graber, and Marsha S. Berzon, Circuit Judges.

         SUMMARY[*]

         Civil Rights

         The panel affirmed the district court's second supplemental injunction and victim compensation order in a class action alleging that the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office racially profiled Latino drivers and passengers under the guise of enforcing federal and state immigration laws.

         The panel noted that there have been multiple appeals in this case and that the district court entered its second supplemental injunction after discovering that the Sheriff's Office had deliberately violated the court's previous injunction and committed new constitutional violations.

         The panel held that the district court did not abuse its discretion in formulating the terms of the second supplemental injunction, intended to remedy defendants' misconduct and protect plaintiffs' constitutional rights. The panel was satisfied that the challenged provisions flowed from Sheriff Office's violations of court prior orders, constitutional violations, or both. The panel rejected the County's contention that it was not a proper party to this action because the Sheriff's Office and its sheriff do not act on behalf of the County. The panel noted that it had already-thrice-rejected this argument. Finally, the panel rejected the County's contention that it had no authority under Arizona law, Arizona Revised Statute § 11-981(A)(2), to fund compliance with an injunction that arises from willful misconduct. The panel held that even assuming, without deciding that the County's interpretation of the Arizona statute was correct, a state statute prohibiting payment for valid federal court-ordered remedies does not excuse a defendant from complying with those remedies. In addition, the panel noted that the statute that the County cited would, at most, prevent payment from insurance or self-insurance funds. The County failed to explain how this law would preclude it from using other types of funds to comply with the district court's orders, such as those it uses to fund its normal operations.

          OPINION

          WALLACE, CIRCUIT JUDGE.

         Maricopa County appeals from the district court's second supplemental injunction and victim compensation order. We have jurisdiction under ...


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