Clarence Dupnik, the 75 year old sheriff of Pima County, location of the tragic shooting on Saturday, spoke out today in a news conference in which he linked the massacre to the violent political atmosphere in the U.S. With his outspoken condemnation of such activities, a report on CNN says he may well soon be called the “Anti Joe Arpaio”.
At the news conference, Clarence Dupnik spoke his opinion of the state of mind of Jared Loughner, the suspected gunman at the massacre. He said, “When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government…The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous.”
Joe Arpaio, 78, has named himself “America’s Toughest Sheriff”, but he may have a contender for the title, said the report. He is unrelenting in his attacks on illegal immigrants who he feels are sullying our civil rights. When Arpaio passed the recent law cracking down on the illegal immigrants, Dupnik was not one of his supporters. Dupnik publicly called the law “a national embarrassment” and submitted an article to the Wall Street Journal saying it was “…a travesty…and unconstitutional…” He said the law was “…morally wrong…”
In spite of his reaction to the law, he agrees it is his job to enforce it, and he will. He stated he hated to have his officers spend all their time seeking papers.
Born in Texas, Dupnik has been in law enforcement 50 years and has been sheriff for 30 of them.