MCSO inmates get a bread and water diet for defacing Old Glory - New York News

MCSO inmates get a bread and water diet for defacing Old Glory

Posted: Updated:
PHOENIX -

Just in time for Veterans' Day: patriotic jails, courtesy of Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

U.S. flag stickers in cells housing 8,500 inmates around Maricopa County -- and inmates who mess with the stickers will find the Sheriff messing with their food.

MCSO says it employs over 600 men and women who are U.S. military veterans.  This campaign is to honor them and anyone who disrespects Old Glory in a MCSO jail is looking at a lot of indigestion.

Any inmate ripping or defacing these American flag stickers is looking at what the Sheriff calls a bread and water diet. 

Actually, it's Nutri-Loaf, a punishment for bad behavior, disgusting by all accounts, including the Sheriff's.

"Hate to tell you it doesn't meet my criteria," he said.

We visited an area where the worst inmates are housed.  Sure enough, flags have met with some resistance.

In the special management unit of the 4th Avenue Jail, an inmate in a one cell has been repeatedly tearing down a flag decal, resulting in him being on a bread and water diet through January 26th.

10 inmates currently slapped with what the Sheriff's news release calls a  bread-and-water penalty for defacing the flag.

The American Civil Liberties Union says quote, "We're looking into the constitutionality of whether prisoners can be punished for defiling the flags (which would be considered public property)."

The Sheriff says he's just promoting patriotism, plain and simple. 

When asked if this is a publicity stunt, he replied, "Well if it is, everything I do is a publicity stunt.  No, it is not and yet in a way it is.  I don't run a CIA secret organization the public should know that I put flags on..."

And not just flags, there will be patriotic music too.  "God Bless America" and the National Anthem will be ringing out over the jails' public-address system.   The Sheriff's news release says quote, "For all inmates, regardless of national origin, to hear and sing along."

Seven days on bread and water for each flag sticker violation, the sheriff says.

We spoke with professor Steven Gonzales of Arizona Summit Law School.  He said he believes the Sheriff's flag policy looks constitutional on paper.  The question is whether it will be enforced fairly.

Back to the veterans theme: the Sheriff's office says there are plans to house all inmate-veterans together, in honor of their service. 

Didn't find what
you were looking for?

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Garner's family meets U.S. attorney

    Staten Island stores worried about rally

    Staten Island stores worried about rally

    Thursday, August 21 2014 11:01 PM EDT2014-08-22 03:01:16 GMT
    The Rev. Al Sharpton and family members of Eric Garner came from a meeting with U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch in which they asked for a federal civil rights investigation into his apparent chokehold death. Meantime, Staten Island businesses are bracing for the huge crowds expected at Saturday's march. Sharpton said he is estimating about 3,000 to 5,000 people to rally Saturday.
    The Rev. Al Sharpton and family members of Eric Garner came from a meeting with U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch in which they asked for a federal civil rights investigation into his apparent chokehold death. Meantime, Staten Island businesses are bracing for the huge crowds expected at Saturday's march. Sharpton said he is estimating about 3,000 to 5,000 people to rally Saturday.
  • Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team auditions

    Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team auditions

    Thursday, August 21 2014 10:26 PM EDT2014-08-22 02:26:39 GMT
    Out of over 500 hopefuls only a handful will join the Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team. The Nets held auditions this week at LIU Brooklyn. Adorable Bronx native Arielle was turned away last year but this time around she's made it through to the final round of the auditions. But even those who were on the team last year still have to try out.
    Out of over 500 hopefuls only a handful will join the Brooklyn Nets Kids Dance Team. The Nets held auditions this week at LIU Brooklyn. Adorable Bronx native Arielle was turned away last year but this time around she's made it through to the final round of the auditions. But even those who were on the team last year still have to try out.
  • Chris Rock gets foul ball at Yankees game

    Chris Rock gets foul ball at Yankees game

    Thursday, August 21 2014 10:03 PM EDT2014-08-22 02:03:11 GMT
    Chris Rock almost made the play of the day at Yankee Stadium. Instead, the comedian wound up with a nice prize -- a foul ball that nearly landed in his lap during Thursday's game between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees.
    Chris Rock almost made the play of the day at Yankee Stadium. Instead, the comedian wound up with a nice prize -- a foul ball that nearly landed in his lap during Thursday's game between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices