Middle school cancels Sheriff Arpaio's visit - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Middle school gives Sheriff Arpaio the cold shoulder

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Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio spent the day in California on Friday for a trade convention and planned on visiting middle school students, but that meeting was cancelled.

Arpaio, known for his stringent crackdown on illegal immigration, didn't get a warm welcome from the students on Friday.

The man known as "America's Toughest Sheriff" had no problem signing pink boxer shorts and books at a trade convention for the burglar alarm industry in San Francisco, but getting past the doors at James Lick Middle School was tougher than he thought.

In advance of the Sheriff's visit, 50 students sent him letters -- in Spanish, telling him how they disagree with his law enforcement tactics.

Arpaio called some of what the children wrote, "nasty."

"They said I have concentration camps with my Tent City, then I'm a racist, and I break up families and just go after brown people."

Many of the children focused in large part on Arizona's "show me your papers law," Senate Bill 1070 -- believed to be one of the strictest measures on illegal immigration in the country.

The Sheriff says he would have liked to explain to the children that he doesn't make the law, he enforces it, but he never got that chance.

Arpaio had planned on meeting with the children, but the school district cancelled the meeting, saying "Due to scheduling it isn't going to work for Sheriff Arpaio to speak with students in person while he is town for a conference."

Arpaio says he doesn't believe scheduling is the issue.

"I don't know what their agenda is.  I'm sure it may have gone up the line and someone said, 'Oh no, you're not going to have that sheriff in our school."

When FOX 10 called the school to find out a reason for the cancellation, officials simply said they didn't have one.

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