MCSO issues policy change after finding secret recordings at home of ex-deputy Ramon Armendariz

PHOENIX - The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office is issuing a new policy to its deputies: they can no longer wear body cameras, and if they have one, they must turn over any video they captured during traffic stops.

The new policy was issued after they searched Deputy Ramon Armendariz's home and found more than 500 disks with thousands of recorded traffic stops dating back seven years. 

Earlier this month, the ex-MCSO deputy was discovered inside his home dead of an apparent suicide.

So, far they've reviewed 200 disks and found recordings of Armendariz acting inappropriately. 

They say he badgered drivers, sometimes for nearly an hour, for various traffic violations.

But, they say none of his excessive rants involve illegal immigration. They say the accusations he targeted Hispanics is unfounded, especially since Armendariz didn't receive citizen complaints.

"Even undocumented aliens have friends who will listen to their story and be mad enough to make that call for them, too," says Chief Jack Macintyre with the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

While Armendariz issued many citations, MCSO says he rarely sent them to the court system. They tell us that means few cases, if any, will be affected by the newly discovered videos.

While deputies won't be permitted to wear body cameras, they will have cameras installed in their cars. 

That was mandated by a judge, when the Sheriff's Office was found guilty of racially profiling.

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