Larkin & Lacey

It wouldn’t be a reach to say that Sheriff Joe Arpaio has earned his title as a very controversial figure, due to his questionable, and sometimes downright unethical practices.

Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey have had a long and tumultuous history with Sheriff Joe Arpaio; one that came to a head ten years ago when the sheriff had the two newspapermen arrested after they published an article regarding a grand jury probe.

In having Jim Larking and Michael Lacey arrested, Sheriff Joe Arpaio violated their civil rights in a rather brazen fashion, and it was eventually discovered that the sheriff had also done so as a part of a scheme to quiet the two since they had been a thorn in his side since he was first elected in 1992. Learn more about Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey: and

Throughout his career as the Sheriff of Maricopa County, Joe Arpaio had been exposed for a number of misdeeds, ranging from the horrible conditions of his tent city operation to the mass of people who have died while in the custody of he and his officers. Some of the most heinous crimes that Joe Arpaio was accused of regarded his outright discriminatory practices toward minorities, particularly Latino Americans.

Eventually, evidence regarding this would lead to his exit from the Sheriff’s Office of Maricopa County, and due to his wrongful arresting of Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey, the two would receive a settlement in the amount of $3.75 million.

The monies received from this settlement would lay the foundation for the Frontera Fund, which is dedicated to protecting the rights of immigrants from all walks of life. Although Sheriff Joe Arpaio enacted a myriad of cringe-worthy episodes that ultimately led to his demise, it is fair to assess that the roles Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey played were integral.

While today, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey are well known for their position regarding several prominent print publications, as well as websites such as Backpage, their climb up the ladder began in 1970 when, Lacey, along with several other students, began the Phoenix New Times while still students on the campus of Arizona State University.

Soon after, Jim Larkin became Michael Lacey’s business partner, kicking off the beginning of what would become a considerable empire. In 1983, Larkin and Lacey would significantly expand their print papers, purchasing Westword, which, at the time, was the news-and-arts weekly for the Denver area. Read more: Jim Larkin | Crunchbase and Jim Larkin |

Ultimately, this expansion would grow to house 17 papers, including Miami New Times, LA Weekly, and New York City’s own, Village Voice.

Eventually, Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin’s company would become a national powerhouse, and after the successful duo overcame their longstanding saga with Sheriff Joe Arpaio, their flagship publication, Village Voice, would garner the reputation for spot-on news coverage, full-fledged investigative reporting, and magazine-style writing.

In 2012, Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey sold their company, WM, to a group of executives, leaving the company at an all-time high, where their publications reached 56 million viewers each month online, as well as 9 million print readers.