U.S. Dept. of Justice May Sue AZ Sheriff Joe Arpaio

A federal investigation looking into the controversial practices of Maricopa County, AZ Sheriff Joseph Arpaio has heated up since the recent Department of Justice victory over Senate Bill 1070. Ever since President Obama came into office, the White House administration has been butting heads with the self-named "Toughest Sheriff in America."

But recently, the Justice Department has issued a warning that they intend to sue Arpaio if he does not comply with their civil rights investigation into whether the sheriff discriminates against Latinos. Arpaio is also under investigation about whether or not he used his power to intimidate political opponents and misappropriated government funds.

The criminal case is being led by U.S. attorney Dennis K. Burke, a former top aide to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. Justice Department officials said that Sheriff Arpaio's resistance is highly unusual and they they rarely find it necessary to "to compel access to the requested documents, facilities and personnel."