When tides turn and favor a few, these fortunate people can indeed make a significant difference in the lives of many others. Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey, two partners in the publishing world, lived a humble life that consisted of working hard and uncovering facts about various incidents that occurred in Phoenix.
They worked for the Phoenix New Times, a publication that had taken up the challenge to show the world the real face of former Sheriff Joe Arpaio and many others like him.
The lives of Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey were mundane until Joe Arpaio took it upon himself to enact a personal vendetta he had been brewing up in his mind for Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey.
A decade ago, on an evening that was otherwise uneventful, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey were pulled out of their homes by the Special Enforcement Unit and arrested on the spot without justifiable probable cause which is something that was previously unheard of until that day.
This unit, however, wasn’t acting by its free will, as Joe Arpaio had influenced the department to take action forcibly against these two media representatives. Learn more about James Larkin and Michael Lacey: http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/blogs/az-aclu-honors-new-times-founders-jim-larkin-and-mike-lacey-as-civil-libertarians-of-the-year-6500737
After being arrested and illegally detained in individual cells within Maricopa County’s prison, all hell broke loose, not against Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey but against the sheriff, Joe Arpaio, the mastermind assailant.
Things did look up for these two journalists, and within 24 hours, they were rescued from their shackles and let go with all charges dropped, as justice had prevailed, and the nation had spoken.
Being survivors and not mere victims, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey decided to start their pursuit for justice by filing a case against Maricopa County for the acts of Joe Arpaio and Maricopa County’s involvement in denying two citizens their first amendment and civil rights. After many tiresome visits to the court, an appellate judge granted Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey a settlement amount of $3.7 Million.
As soon as the dice of fortune rolled in favour of Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey, they decided to do something noble with the settlement money they received in 2013. The funds, when used right, gave birth to the Frontera Foundation, an initiative that not only ensured that the legacy of Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey’s noble acts wouldn’t be forgotten but also a means to get justice for the Latino people in Arizona.
Even today, together, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey continue on their path to fight for justice for immigrants who are constantly being targeted by people like Joe Arpaio, all the while undoing all the harm the former sheriff had done in his lifetime.
The start of the Frontera Fund, however; wasn’t the end of the line for Joe Arpaio, as the scales of fortune tipped once again when Joe Arpaio was about to be given an enduring prison sentence. President Donald Trump, a long-time ally of the sheriff, granted Joe Arpaio a presidential pardon an event that was least expected.
Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey had a thought or two about Joe Arpaio not being served just desserts, yet they did what any noble people would do, they took the fight to a whole new level by staying committed to their cause, come what may.