On Thursday, a package that was addressed to Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Phoenix office was identified as being suspicious by a letter carrier. That package contained black powder and an ignition device, which could have caused a major explosion if opened.
Maricopa County Chief Deputy Jerry Sheridan said, “Had someone opened that package, it would have caused a major explosion and caused serious physical injury, burns and maybe death. That is a very, very serious threat.”
Sheriff Arpaio has been the target of numerous civil and criminal investigations over the years ranging from abuse of power to civil rights violations. Arpaio is known for immigration raids and controversial policing practices.
Currently, Arpaio is the target of a recall effort that began in January 2013. Last month, the AP reported that organizers had collected 150,000 of the 335,000 signatures required by May 30 to promote a recall election. The 80 year old Arpaio has been the Sheriff of Maricopa County for the past 20 years.