Attorney: NC sheriff won't settle profiling claims

AP News
Posted: Sep 26, 2012 5:07 PM

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — An attorney for a North Carolina sheriff accused of illegally arresting Latinos without probable cause to boost deportations says the lawman isn't interested in a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department.

Attorney S.C. Kitchen told government lawyers Wednesday that Alamance County Sheriff Terry Johnson hasn't done wrong and his deputies don't discriminate.

The development sets up the potential for the federal government to sue the county.

Johnson has supported a federal program that allowed local law enforcement officials to check the immigration status of those they detain. The Department of Homeland Security announced this year it was discontinuing the program after widespread complaints of racial profiling.

The Justice Department said last week that Johnson abused his authority by ordering his deputies to find reasons to arrest motorists who appeared Latino.