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Trump pardons early supporter Sheriff Joe

The former sheriff always maintained he was innocent

(National SentinelLaw & Order: As expected, President Donald J. Trump has pardoned former Maricopa County, Ariz. Sheriff Joe Arpaio, once proclaimed as “the toughest sheriff in America.”

“Trump had signaled this week that the first presidential pardon of his administration would go to Arpaio, 85, whom he has frequently praised for his hardline immigration stance,” Reuters reported.

The pardon came less than a month after he was convicted of criminal contempt in a case involving his department’s racial profiling policy.

Arpaio, and many of his supporters, always believed the charges against him were politically motivated. Indeed, the former Obama Justice Department had it in for Arizona over its attempts to strengthen laws against illegal immigration, suing the state in federal court and, for the most part, winning.

The former sheriff always maintained he was innocent.

The sentencing phase was to begin Oct. 5. Arpaio faced up to six months in confinement, a sentence equivalent to that of a misdemeanor.

Arpaio took to Twitter — what else? — to thank Trump.

“Thank you @realdonaldtrump for seeing my conviction for what it is: a political witch hunt by holdovers in the Obama justice department!” he wrote.

He added: “I am humbled and incredibly grateful to President Trump. I look fwd to putting this chapter behind me and helping to .”

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