Everybody's favorite dingbat sheriff, Joe Arpaio, is under scrutiny like always. However, this time it's not concerning his far-out birther fantasies regarding President Barack Obama's birth certificate. In fact, his weird obsession with putting inmates in pink underwear is the reason.
It's possible that a former Maricopa County inmate may have died as a result of the humiliating policy enforced by Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Thirty-six-year-old Eric Vogel, a man who suffered from schizophrenia, reportedly died of a heart attack after attempting to outrun Maricopa County deputies. While on the surface this seems like an "accidental" death of natural causes, sources have revealed that there could be more to this case.
Eric Vogel, as previously stated, suffered from schizophrenia. This condition may have been inflamed by Arpaio's strict and humilating dress code required for inmates. Vogel had been arrested recently before his death and was forced to "dress out" in the notorious pink underwear. Vogel reportedly became hysterical, beliving he was "going to be raped," according to sources. He was then held down by officials in the jail and stripped naked before being forced to dress into the pink undergarments.
Indeed, people joke about "America's toughest sheriff" and his need to parade inmates around in feminine colors, but this really isn't funny. Whatever happened to the whole concept of Americans being against "cruel and unusual" punishment? Isn't forcing men to dress in pink underwear a form of unusual punishment? At the least it is degrading and a form of power play that shouldn't be acceptable in the U.S. justice system. At the least this policy may have led to further mental distress which caused Eric Vogel to flee in fear from the Maricopa County Sheriff's deputies. He was evidentlly in fear of being held down and stripped nude by these officials again. Should Sheriff Joe Arpaio answer for this?
Chelsea Hoffman is a prolific crime writer and fiction author with several works published. Her writing has been recognized by such entities as NBC Dateline and several others. Contact her directly by visiting ChelseaHoffman.Com.Or follower her on Twitter @TheRealChelseaH