It was no surprise to the citizens of Maricopa County that their former sheriff, Joe Arpaio, would be officially pardoned after President Donald Trump issued the order; recently, United States District Judge, Susan R. Bolton, did just that.
It was a decade ago that, on the order’s of “America’s Toughest Sheriff,” that the long-brewing tensions between Joe Arpaio, and the former heads of New Times Inc, Jim Larkin, and Michael Lacey, came to a head – resulting in their unlawful arrests.
This wouldn’t be the first time that Joe Arpaio violated the constitutional rights of those he had sworn to protect, as Michael Lacey recently ran down a condensed list of his crimes when speaking on the appeal, but it would result in a unanimous victory Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey, resulting in their $3.75 million settlement.
The 1970’s proved to be an integral decade for the way in which print media was delivered in the United States, due in part to the divide created by the Vietnam War, as well as well as the public’s need for a voice that spoke for a long-neglected population of people.
During this time, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey, having recently dropped out of Arizona State University, decided to fill the need for an alternative take on the issues that affected the pro-war and anti-war body politic. Joined by Frank Fiore, Nick Stupey, Karen Lofgren, and Hal Smith, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey set out to produce a newspaper that did just that.
Jim Larkin, handling the marketing of Phoenix New Times, was able to garner ad space from a number of longstanding corporations, including J.C. Penny. This enabled Larkin and Lacey to increase their readership, as well as their finances throughout the decade.
As the newspaper grew, the duo decided to implement new areas concerning the alternative community, including the utilization of satirical cartoons, as well as creating a cultural section to focus on issues outside of America’s political climate. Read more: Jim Larkin | Crunchbase and Jim Larkin | Angel.co
In 1983, as Phoenix New Times began to establish itself as a dominant force, they decided expansion was an order, soon acquiring Westword – a publication that focused on issues regarding the Denver, CO area. This was the first move in the expansion of the New Times brand but eventually led to the purchase of a number of publications that were in accord with the visions of Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey.
With names such as the Village Voice, Miami New Times, and LA Weekly under the New Times umbrella, it was now possible for Larkin and Lacey to reach the masses, covering the whole of the United States.
Today, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey no longer head the brand that they brought to prominence over the course of four decades, but still remain active, focusing on several of their new ventures.
After their victory over Joe Arpaio, they started the Frontera Fund with the $3.75 million awarded to them, which focuses on protecting the freedoms of the people that Joe Arpaio and his deputies harassed so viciously during his 24-year term.
Learn more about Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin: