Even ‘The New York Times’ notes closing of ‘Tent City’

Inmates serving time at Maricopa County’s Tent City jail pose for a picture in Phoenix, Arizona August 22, 2012. The controversial jail is run by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is seeking re-election for a sixth term during November’s general election. Over 400,000 inmates have served time at Tent City. REUTERS/Joshua Lott

By Fernanda Santos | The New York Times

Tent City, the outdoor jail that stood as the last remaining symbol of Joe Arpaio’s long, turbulent tenure as sheriff of Maricopa County, will close in the coming weeks, Mr. Arpaio’s successor, Sheriff Paul Penzone, said on Tuesday.

“Starting today, the circus ends, and the tents come down,” Sheriff Penzone said.

The jail, where inmates wore striped jumpsuits and pink underwear and slept in 70 surplus Korean War tents, became an effective and telegenic publicity tool for Mr. Arpaio. His unforgiving tough-on-crime stance and his pursuit of illegal immigrants propelled him to re-election five times, but also thrust him into lawsuits and controversy.

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