Arpaio, who served as Maricopa County sheriff in Arizona for more than two decades before he lost his re-election bid last year, was convicted earlier this year of criminal contempt for ignoring a judge's order to halt his office's racial profiling practices.
Arpaio, the Springfield, Mass. native and controversial former lawman in Arizona's Maricopa County, was granted a pardon by President Donald Trump on August 25. One of his lawyers, Jack Wilenchik, has argued that should the conviction be allowed to stand, it could be used against Arpaio in a future civil or criminal case.
Joe Arpaio remains a marked man.
Soon after the President's pardon, Arpaio's attorneys filed a motion seeking to erase all record of the conviction, but U.S. District Court Judge Susan Bolton denied the request.
And even the distinctive aspects of Trump's pardon-including his apparent overruling of the federal judiciary's view of the constitutional rights at issue in the case, as evidenced by Trump's characterization of Arpaio as having been "doing his job" all along-are not what motivates Judge Bolton's conclusions, at least as they are presented. "To vacate all rulings in this case would run afoul of this important distinction".
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"The pardon undoubtedly spared defendant from any punishment that might otherwise have been imposed", Bolton wrote. "It did not, however, "revise the historical facts" of this case".
Now Arpaio's attorneys intend to take the question of whether his record should be wiped clean to the San Francisco-based 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
The judge noted in her ruling that a pardon "does not blot out guilt or expunge a judgment of conviction", and actually implies that Arpaio is in fact guilty.
A presidential pardon does not remove a criminal conviction.
"Wilenchik said he was not surprised that the judge had refused to undo her own order".