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Staff Reports

Staff Reports
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Nothing but blue skies and heat in store this weekend in Maricopa. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for Thursday and into Friday morning. In parts of Pinal County, an air-quality alert is in place, as well.

Today will be sunny and hot, with a high near 110 degrees F. Skies will remain clear overnight as the low will be around 77.

Friday is expected to be more of the same, with a high temperature near 111. The nighttime low will be around 77.

Saturday will remain sunny but the high will drop to around 107. The overnight low will be about 73 degrees under clear skies.

Sunday‘s forecast includes sun and a high near 104. The overnight low will be around 72.

Temperatures are expected to climb back into the danger zone of 110 and higher at the start of next week.

During a heat warning, there is increased potential for heat-related illness. Those active outside during afternoon hours or those without access to air conditioning are most at risk.

Pinal County Department of Air Quality issued an ozone high-pollution advisory, indicating ozone levels can lead to respiratory problems.

Maryroefina Catha (PCSO photo)

Police say the manager of a local grocery chain was the victim of assault at the hands of an alleged shoplifter Friday.

Maryroefina Catha, 40, was arrested the morning of June 15 at the Bashas’ grocery store for allegedly attempting to steal a six-pack of beer, a box of wine and margarita mix.

Prior to her arrest, Catha attempted to exit the building with the stolen items. The store manager reportedly confronted her and attempted to “secure” the woman’s purse.

That’s when Catha “grabbed (the manager’s) neck and arms from behind” and claimed she had a gun in her purse, according to a Maricopa Police Department report.

A responding officer noted abrasions on the manager’s shoulder and side. Catha denied stealing the alcohol and allegedly admitted to physically grabbing the store manager.

MPD forwarded charges of class 1 misdemeanor shoplifting and assault, also a class 1 misdemeanor.

Catha has one prior shoplifting charge out of Maricopa County in April.

Roary Howard Jr. (PCSO photo)

Conversations between family members prompted a disturbing call to police last week.

Officers with the Maricopa Police Department received reports June 14 that a Maricopa man living in Senita had sexually abused “several” minors.

Howard Roary Jr., 58, was arrested later that day on two counts of sexual assault, sexual conduct with a minor and child molestation. The offenses allegedly occurred in his Maricopa home on Toya Street and in California.

Roary is not a registered sex offender. He’s had prior arrests in Maricopa County for disorderly conduct, fighting and threatening.

Before being transported to the Pinal County Jail, police reports state Roary denied sexually abusing and molesting children.

Roary will be in Pinal County Superior Court June 22 for a bail bond hearing. He’s in custody on a $50,000 secured bond.

Miguel Figueroa. PCSO photo

After pleading guilty to stabbing his wife to death, Miguel Figueroa, 47, of Maricopa was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of “earning” parole after 25 years.

Pinal County Superior Court Judge Kevin White called Figueora’s actions in 2016 a “horrific offense” and said the harm done was “palpable in the courtroom.”

A family member of Olivia Figueroa made an emotional plea to the judge asking him to sentence her cousin’s killer to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

“We all miss her. I’ll never ever forgive him. Nobody will,” she said.

Deputy County Attorney Kristen Sharifi said Olivia Figueroa suffered around 35 stab wounds, with the weapon penetrating her skull and her heart.

“There was massive destruction to this woman’s body,” Sharifi said.

Figueroa told White he was sorry for what he had done and was willing to pay the price. “Lord have mercy on my soul,” he said.

But Figueroa’s life sentence does not begin until after he has served time for attempted aggravated assault on his son and for a parole violation. White sentenced Figueroa to six years for the assault and 2.5 for the parole violation, to be served consecutively. He is credited with 554 days already served behind bars.

A mitigating factor for the judge was the fact that Figueroa pleaded guilty and took responsibility for the crime, sparing his children a trial.

Figueroa’s two adult children’s absence during sentencing Monday afternoon was much discussed by prosecution and the defense.

“At this point they don’t ever want to speak to him again,” Sharifi said.

The events leading up to the Dec. 10 murder of Olivia Figueroa in 2016 were detailed by defense attorney Mark Benson.

Olivia and her son were living separately from Miguel in a family member’s home.

After a family shopping trip concluded in Phoenix, Miguel allegedly became angry with Olivia when she reportedly refused to return with Miguel to his home.

The son, also a witness, allegedly told prosecution this “infuriated” his father, Sharifi said.

The Maricopa Police Department soon began receiving emergency calls from residents in a neighborhood hearing a woman being beaten in a truck.

Olivia was later found stabbed to death in a desert area of the Heritage District.

“This was a man who was married to this woman for over 20 years. He should’ve been her protector. He should’ve taken care of her. He had a chance while he was on probation to turn his life around to receive the help to better his life, to better Olivia’s life, but instead he let his anger overcome him and he took her out of this world,” Sharifi said.

Benson said had the case gone to trial, he would have likely used a “crime of passion” defense.

A report from a clinical psychologist in February of this year did not include reports of anger management issues. However, the report stated Figueroa said he’s suffered from depression all his life and has “always entertained thoughts of suicide” since a young age.

The report also stated Figueroa had a history of experiencing auditory hallucinations and narcotic drug use.

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With clouds moving in, high temperatures are expected to drop into the 90s this weekend. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

The National Weather Service is still predicting a chance of showers as part of Maricopa’s weekend weather.

Today‘s weather continues an excessive heat warning as the high temperature is expected to be 108 with mostly sunny skies. The nighttime low will be around 82.

Friday, however, comes in with lots of clouds and a 20-percent chance of showers. The high will likely only be 95. During the night, the likelihood of rain jumps to 40 percent and low will be around 71.

Saturday, there is a 30-percent chance of showers and thunderstorms before 11 a.m. Afterward, the day will be mostly sunny with a high near 97. Breezes will increase to 10-15 mph with gusts of 20 mph. By nighttime, the chance for rain will decrease to 10 percent, and the low will be around 69.

Sunday is expected to be sunny with a high of 100. The overnight low will be around 67.

That leads to a week of steady triple digits and clear skies.

The Maricopa Police Department recently arrested a man after he allegedly missed his court date for driving on a suspended license.

But it’s what reportedly happened when officers booked Eduardo Luna into jail June 9 that turned a misdemeanor case into multiple felony recommendations.

A report from MPD alleges Luna attempted to conceal drugs and paraphernalia on his person while being processed into the Pinal County Adult Detention Facility in Florence.

“(Luna) verbally identified the items as a meth pipe and meth, which he claims he concealed behind his testicles,” the report states.

In addition to the class 1 misdemeanor failure to appear charge, Luna also faces three drug offenses: promoting prison contraband, a class 2 felony; dangerous drug possession, a class 4 felony; and drug paraphernalia possession, a class 6 felony.

Arthur Eric Magana and Gustavo Olivo are charged with murder. PCSO photos

Monday, Pinal County Judge Christopher O’Neil set the trial date for one of the teens accused of murdering 20-year-old Wyatt Miller nearly two years ago.

Arthur Eric Magana will stand trial Nov. 13 at 9 a.m. in front of Judge Kevin White and a 12-person jury.

The November trial was tentatively scheduled in April when White officially set the trial for co-defendant Gustavo Olivo.

John Schaus, attorney for Olivo, previously expressed a desire to settle his client’s case without a trial. However, Olivo’s trial begins two weeks before Magana’s on Oct. 30.

O’Neil, who was covering White’s docket temporarily Monday afternoon, affirmed the October trial date. O’Neil said the two trials will remain under White and will not be subjected to reassignment. Both trials are estimated to last six days each.

The teens are accused of first degree murder and burglary in the shooting death of Miller on Nov. 7, 2016, in an unincorporated area of Maricopa.

Magana and Olivo will return to court for status review hearings in July.

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Roofing tiles wait during house construction in Maricopa. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

The extreme heat warning that was in place last week continues in the early days of this week, but rain is not far away, according to the National Weather Service.

Today‘s high is expected to be 109 under sunny skies. Tonight will be clear with a low around 71.

Tuesday is forecast to be sunny and hot, with a high near 110. The night will be partly cloudy with a low around 78.

Wednesday may be mostly sunny as temperatures soar to 111. Afternoon clouds will move in again, and the overnight low will be around 80.

Thursday, temperatures are expected to remain in the danger zone, with a high of 108 under mostly sunny skies. Winds will begin to pick up in the afternoon, however, blowing at 5-15 mph with 20 mph gusts. That will bring a 20-percent chance of showers overnight and a low around 77.

Friday, the chance of showers and thunderstorms continues at 20 percent. The day should be partly sunny with a low of around 101 and breezes of 5-15 mph. Overnight, the chance of rain increases to 30 percent, and the low will be around 72.

The extended forecast sees the possibility of precipitation increase Saturday when the high temperature is expected to stay below 100.

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Kyrsten Sinema, Doug Ducey and Steve Gaynor have large receipts for the first quarter in their respective races.

(Candidates ranked by receipts)

Federal Offices
(January 2017-March 2018 receipts)

U.S. Senate

Kyrsten Sinema (D)
Cash balance: $6,688,670
Receipts: $6,552,764
Disbursements: $2,127,728.43
Debts owed: $0

Martha McSally (R)
Cash balance: $2,578,746
Receipts: $3,377,931
Disbursements: $799,184
Debts owed: $0

Kelli Ward (R)
Cash balance: $432,553
Receipts: $1,980,775
Disbursements: $1,600,150
Debts owed: $127,652

Joe Arpaio (R)
Cash balance: $254,938
Receipts: $503,191
Disbursements: $248,252
Debts owed: $0

Deedra Abboud (D)
Cash balance at: $16,423
Receipts: $63,952
Disbursements: $47,530
Debts owed: $98,095

U.S. Congress AZ District 1

Tom O’Halleran (D)
Cash balance: $885,083
Receipts: $1,327,921
Disbursements: $460,129
Debts owed: $0

Tiffany Shedd (R)
Cash balance: $250,583
Receipts: $339,600
Disbursements: $89,016
Debts owed: $150,000

Steve Smith (R)
Cash balance: $244,541
Receipts: $307,778
Disbursements: $63,236
Debts owed: $0

Wendy Rogers (R)
Cash balance: $201,317
Receipts: $238,543
Disbursements: $42,215
Debts owed: $0

Miguel Olivas (D)
Has filed no first-quarter reports

State Offices
(January-March 2018 receipts)


Doug Ducey (R)
Cash balance: $2,678,448
Cash receipts: $549,965
Cash disbursements: $220,817
Loans received: $0

Steve Farley (D)
Cash balance: $309,010
Cash receipts: $265,192
Cash disbursements: $188,542
Loans received: $0

David Garcia (D)
Cash balance: $184,925.97
Cash receipts: $238,551.58
Cash disbursements: $135,538.67
Loans received: $0

Kelly Fryer (D)
Cash balance: $48,419.19
Cash receipts for: $88,395.30
Cash disbursements: $39,976.11
Loans received: $0

Noah Parker Dyer (I)
Cash balance: $19,380.17
Cash receipts: $35,868.25
Cash disbursements: $18,876.71
Loans received: $46,429.55

Ken Bennett (R)*
Has filed no first-quarter reports

Secretary of State

Steve Gaynor (R)
Cash balance: $557,179
Cash receipts: $623,000
Cash disbursements: $65,821
Loans received: $620,000

Michele Reagan (R)
Cash balance: $451,706
Cash receipts: $75,230
Cash disbursements: $91,055
Loans received: $0

Katie Hobbs (D)
Cash balance: $169,228
Cash receipts: $115,206
Cash disbursements: $62,437
Loans received: $0

Mark Robert Gordon (D)
Cash balance: $40,608
Cash receipts: $54,118
Cash disbursements: $40,203
Loans received: $0

Attorney General

Mark Brnovich (R)
Cash balance: $453,067
Cash receipts: $112,750
Cash disbursements: $43,206.57
Loans received: $0

January Contreras (D)
Cash balance: $162,550
Cash receipts: $124,443
Cash disbursements: $68,443
Lon received: $0


Kimberly Yee (R)
Cash balance: $539,685
Cash receipts: $17,490
Cash disbursements: $17,805
Loans received: $400,000

Mark Manoil (D)*
Cash balance: $5,365
Cash receipts: $9,330
Cash disbursements: $6,142
Loans received: $0

Mark Cardenas (D)
Cash balance: $6,515
Cash receipts: $6,515
Cash disbursements: $0
Loans received: $0

Superintendent of Public Instruction

Jonathan Gelbart (R)
Cash balance: $70,778
Cash receipts: $9,375
Cash disbursements: $6,468
Loans received: $25,000

David Schapira (D)*
Cash balance: $59,619
Cash receipts: $100,034
Cash disbursements: $58,290
Loans received: $0

Frank Riggs (R)
Cash balance: $27,386
Cash receipts: $28,790
Cash disbursements: $2,224
Loans received: $46,800

Kathy Hoffman (D)
Cash balance: $11,573
Cash receipts: $11,857
Cash disbursements: $6,220
Loans received: $0

Diane Douglass (R)
Cash balance: $6,004
Cash receipts: $2,405
Cash disbursements: $685
Loans received: $1,300

Mine Inspector

Joe Hart (R)
Cash balance: $544
Cash receipts: $4,090
Cash disbursements: $4,500
Loans received: $1,000

Bill Pierce (D)*
Cash balance: $2,365
Cash receipts: $826
Cash disbursements: $202
Loans received: $0

Corporation Commissions

Kiana Sears (D)*
Cash balance: $101,965
Cash receipts: $104,167
Cash disbursements: $9,232
Loans received: $0

Rodney Glassman (R)
Cash balance: $366,661
Cash receipts: $66,001
Cash disbursements: $36,547
Loans received: $100,000

James O’Connor (R)*
Cash balance: $4,696
Cash receipts: $12,435
Cash disbursements: $13,123
Loans received: $0

Bill Mundell (D)*
Cash balance: $13,158
Cash receipts: $7,530
Cash disbursements: $1,764
Loans received: $0

Sandra Kennedy (D)*
Cash balance: $5,562
Cash receipts: $5,060
Cash disbursements: $118
Loans received: $0

Eric Sloan (R)
Cash balance: $3,094
Cash receipts: $2,465
Cash disbursements: $75
Loans received: $0

Tom Forese (R)
Cash balance: $620,057
Cash receipts: $1,000
Cash disbursements: $2,447
Loans received: $0

Arizona Senate District 11

Ralph Atchue (D)*
Cash balance: $17,283
Cash receipts: $15,720
Cash disbursements: $1,215
Loans received: $0

Vince Leach (R)
Cash balance: $114,272
Cash receipts: $12,775
Cash disbursements: $2,547
Loans received: $0

Arizona House District 11

Hollace (Holly) Lyon (D)
Cash balance: $70,547
Cash receipts: $24,823
Cash disbursements: $4,605
Loans received: $0

Mark Finchem (R)
Cash balance: $23,062
Cash receipts: $5,363
Cash disbursements: $3,253
Loans received: $0

Bret Roberts (R)*
Cash balance: $4,488
Cash receipts: $1,965
Cash disbursements: $305
Loans received: $350

Bridger Kimball (R)
Cash balance: $1,720
Cash receipts: $2,100
Cash disbursements: $2,583
Loans received: $0

Barry McCain (D)*
Cash balance: $0
Cash receipts: $0
Cash disbursements: $0
Loans received: $0

Marcela Quiroz (D)* – interim report
Cash balance: $0
Cash receipts: $0
Cash disbursements: $0
Loans received: $0

Howell W. Jones (R)
Filed no first-quarter reports

*Clean elections candidate

This item appears in the June issue of InMaricopa.

Afternoon clouds will make only a passing acquaintance with Maricopa this weekend. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

It will be a hot weekend with slight breezes and only passing clouds for Maricopa and a continuing heat warning, according to the National Weather Service.

Today is sunny with an expected high of 107 degrees F. Winds will be 5-15 mph in the afternoon, with gusts up to 20 mph. Tonight will be clear with a low around 69.

Friday the forecast calls for sunny skies with a high near 109 and breezes of 5-10 mph. The overnight low will be around 73.

Saturday will likely be sunny and hot, with a high near 110. The nighttime low will be around 73.

Sunday’s forecast sees lots of sun and a high near 108. Winds will return to 5-15 mph with 20-mph gusts. The night is expected to be mostly clear with a low around 72.

The triple digits remain in place for next week, though a few more high clouds will move in.

Firefighters are battling a blaze at a home in Senita. According to Maricopa Fire/Medical Department, three people and two dogs safely made it out of the house on Maricopa Avenue.

The fire, which caused billowing smoke over the neighborhood, apparently started in the garage. The cause and ignition point are not yet known. A car parked in the driveway was partially burned. The call came in at 3:06 p.m.

A cat was rescued from the house.

Two juveniles in a crosswalk were injured Monday when they were struck by a vehicle making a left turn.

According to Maricopa Police Department, the two juveniles had the right of way while crossing State Route 347 on Bowlin Road at around 6:24 p.m. The vehicle, driven by Izmenia Ledezma, was traveling east on Bowlin and turning north onto SR 347.

The juveniles suffered minor injuries, described as scrapes and bruises, but no broken bones. They were transported to a hospital as a precaution.

Ledezma stopped after the collision.

According to MPD, she was cited for failure to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk.


Terrance Words (PCSO photo)

A woman called authorities last week alleging the father of her child was attempting to break down the back door to her home.

The incident reportedly occurred May 31 at 7:16 p.m. on Bishop Drive in Rancho El Dorado.

Before officers arrived, Terrance Words, 29, allegedly kicked down the door, entered the home, argued with the victim and damaged a television before leaving the residence.

MPD arrested Words less than 10 minutes later when officers pulled over his vehicle on Lakeview Drive near State Route 347.

“(Words) admitted to kicking in the back door of the house so he could get his car keys and leave the residence,” the police report states.

The suspect allegedly told police the woman locked him in the backyard.

The reporting officer also alleged in the report that Words admitted to arguing with the woman after she asked him to leave the home and to kicking a table “which caused a television to fall.”

The traffic stop also resulted in police discovering Words was driving on a suspended driver license, according to the report.

MPD forwarded charges of criminal damage domestic violence, a class 2 misdemeanor; disorderly conduct domestic violence, a class 1 misdemeanor; and driving on suspended drivers license, a class 1 misdemeanor.

Police arrested a man on multiple drug offenses last week after allegedly discovering heroin and meth in his possession.

According to a police report, Enapay Estep is accused of having one gram of heroin, 16 grams of methamphetamine, and various drug paraphernalia on his person during a traffic stop June 1 around 7 p.m. on John Wayne Parkway near the Good 2 Go gas station.

Estep was reportedly the backseat passenger in a vehicle pulled over by the Maricopa Police Department for allegedly failing to stop for a stop sign.

The driver of the vehicle did not have a valid driver license, according to the report. MPD later arrested the driver and a front-seat passenger on outstanding warrants after police reportedly discovered marijuana and drug paraphernalia in the vehicle.

Estep consented to officers searching him after they told him marijuana was found in the car. The reporting officer stated Estep admitted to having drugs in his pockets.

An officer also found a spoon with heroin residue, a piece of cotton “Enapay said was used as a filter,” one scale and one needle.

MPD forwarded against Estep charges of possession of marijuana, a class 6 felony; possession of drug paraphernalia, a class 6 felony; possession of dangerous drugs, a class 4 felony; and possession of narcotic drugs, a class 4 felony.

Police later booked Estep into the Pinal County Jail.

Photo by Mason Callejas

Dollar Tree received its commercial tenant improvement permit May 10 for its newly opened store valued at $145,000. The store got its automatic fire sprinkling system permit April 30, and a fire alarm permit on May 9. The store also received an aluminum sign permit valued at $6,000 May 15. Dollar Tree is located at 20797 N. John Wayne Parkway.

Community of Hope Church is undergoing improvements inside and out. It received an automatic fire sprinkling system permit May 15 and a permit to begin moving electric wires underground April 19. The redirection of wires will benefit future community streetlights in the area. The church is also in the process of repairing damaged sidewalk on Honeycutt Avenue. Reconstruction for the sidewalk began May 14.

Businesses receiving fire sprinkler permits include Dunkin Donuts April 17 and Burger King on May 14. Smiley Dental received a sign permit April 18, valued at $2,000, and Verizon received a permit for a new sign April 19, valued at $4,500.

Pioneer Title, 21596 N. John Wayne Parkway, received a commercial tenant improvement permit valued at $80,000.

Maricopa Development Company received a permit for a sales/construction office valued at $3,000 on May 7 at 37346 W. Leonessa Ave. KB Home received the same permit May 10 at 18166 N. Christopher Drive valued at $4,000.

Police and fire stations received capital improvement project permits. Copper Sky Police Substation plans to progress to phase 2, including expanding the parking area. The project is valued at $500,000. Fire stations on Bowlin Road and Alterra Parkway will both be receiving new shade structures, valued at $11,920 and $18,375, respectively. Fire Station 575 on Edison Road will be getting a new fuel tank valued at $32,709 from a permit received May 7.

This item appears in the June issue of InMaricopa.

The overpass is under construction, but anyone working outside this week is under a heat warning. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

This week begins and ends under a heat advisory as residents are asked to take extra caution when outside, according to the National Weather Service.

Today is sunny and hot, with the high expected to reach 110 degrees F. The NWS heat warning from Sunday continues. The night will be mostly clear with a low of 72 and winds of 5-10 mph gusting as high as 20 mph.

Tuesday, expect another sunny day and a high near 107. The overnight low will be around 70 under mostly clear skies.

Wednesday will look similar, with sunny skies and a high near 106 followed by an nighttime low of 70.

Thursday‘s expected high is 108 with light and variable winds and sunny skies. The night will be mostly clear with a low around 73.

Friday‘s high climbs back to 109 with sun and calm winds. Expect an overnight low of 78.

By Saturday, the high temperature will shoot back to 110, keeping the heat warning in place for all outdoor activities during the coming weekend.

The excessive heat warning indicates an increased potential for heat-related illness, especially for those working outside in the afternoon. Drink more water than usual and avoid alcohol, sugar and caffeine. Wear light-colored clothing and wide-brimmed hat when working outside and take frequent rests. Never leave a child or animal in a vehicle.

Early symptoms of heat illness include headache, thirst and muscle cramps. Serious symptoms include weakness, skin that is cool to the touch, fast but weak pulse, nausea and fainting. Severe symptoms include hot and red, dry skin, fast and strong pulse, sweating that has stopped and unconsciousness. Untreated heat illness can lead to fatal heat stroke.

In an end-of-year changeup, Maricopa Unified School District approved dozens of personnel moves Wednesday.

That included creating six new position titles involving more than 27 employees. Among those are 17 general education teachers, three and a half special education teachers, two nurses, three full-time substitutes, a plumber and a payroll clerk.

The new positions, costing $1.2 million, are funded through enrollment growth, inflation funds and carry-forward Maintenance & Operations Funds (M&O).

Seven current employees are being reclassified at a total cost of $48,800 from the same M&O funds. Among them are former high school Principal Rick Abel, who will become a high school teacher. Lead groundskeeper Chad Whittle becomes the grounds coordinator.

Among 14 new hires are high school Spanish teacher Irma Preciado, MHS choir/guitar teacher Austin Showen, Pima Butte Elementary second grade teacher Kelly Gomez, Butterfield Elementary fourth grade teacher Daisha Johnson, high school art teacher Cathy Smith, Santa Rosa Elementary third grade teacher James Braciszewski, Desert Wind Middle School math teacher Barbara Fallstead, Maricopa Elementary kindergarten teacher Amberlyn Strasburg and Santa Cruz Elementary fourth grade teacher Teri Nordhoff.

The district is also dealing with 13 resignations, two terminations and two coaches who did not return their contracts for renewal. Teachers resigning include MHS English teacher Kristen McCallin, SCES fifth grade teacher Suzanne Petersheim, MES ESS teacher Theresa Arellano and high school physical education teacher Cory Rovens. The resignations of high school counselors Rebecca Collins and Gretchen Mazaheri were accepted along with that of guidance counselor Cara Osmer.

Not returning contracts were high school track coach and chemistry/physics teacher Sheldon Hutchinson and MHS girls’ basketball coach and SCES fifth grade teacher Melvin Mitchell. The terminations were a bus driver and a bus aide.

Also in personnel, the board approved $1,000 mentoring stipends for 45 teachers.

The primary races are set for this year’s elections as Wednesday’s deadline passed for candidates. Some incumbents could face a tough primary battle while some seats without an incumbent are in high demand.

Maricopa City Council has three openings and just two incumbents running for re-election. Five others filed their papers to challenge them. The field includes four men and three women. The youngest, and the last to decide to run, is 20-year-old Paige Richie, a political science major at Arizona State University.

“I think what most prompted me to join the race so soon would be my passion for Maricopa,” she said. “Having lived here for many years and for much of my childhood, Maricopa has been the cornerstone of my personal and professional development; I just want to return the favor and help in Maricopa’s development.”

Seven people are running for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Jeff Flake. It is a race in which the top fund-raising candidates are women, including Kyrsten Sinema among the Democrats and Kelli Ward and Martha McSally among the Republicans.

Incumbent Congressman Tom O’Halleran again has a challenge from Miguel Olivas in the primary before he can think about who might emerge from the three Republicans.

State incumbents with challenges from their own party include Gov. Doug Ducey, who saw the late emergence of former Secretary of State Ken Bennett, taking shots at Ducey’s record on education.

“The establishment said we could not do this, but once again, Arizona is proving individual rights and the constitution still matter,” Bennett tweeted after filing his nomination papers on deadline day.

On that vein, the controversial sitting superintendent of public education, Diane Douglas, is awash in fellow Republicans gunning for her job, not to mention two Democrats.

Secretary of State Michele Reagan also has a primary challenger with deep pockets while the Democrats stack up three deep for the position.

Races with no incumbent include state treasurer, state senator for District 11 and Maricopa/Stanfield constable. Races that have only one candidate per party and will therefore have no primary are attorney general, mine inspector and state senator for District 11. Maricopa/Stanfield Justice of the Peace Lyle Riggs faces no opponent at all.

Three of the four Republicans running for state house in District 11 are Maricopa residents – Howell Jones, Bridger Kimball and Bret Roberts.

Candidates who wish to run for a seat on the governing board of Maricopa Unified School District can begin filing July 9 to be on the general election ballot.


U.S. Senate

Deedra Abboud
Kyrsten Sinema

Green Party
Eve Reyes-Aguirre

Doug Marks

Joe Arpaio
Martha McSally
Kelli Ward

U.S. Representative District 1

Tom O’Halleran*
Miguel Olivas

Wendy Rogers
Tiffany Shedd
Steve Smith



Steve Farley
Kelly Fryer
David Garcia

Kevin McCormick

Ken Bennett
Doug Ducey*

Secretary of State

Mark Robert Gordon
Katie Hobbs
Leslie Pico

Steve Gaynor
Michele Reagan*

Attorney General

January Contreras

Mark Brnovich*


Mark Manoil

Jo Ann Sabbagh
Kimberly Yee

Superintendent of Public Instruction

Kathy Hoffman
David Schapira

Bob Branch
Diane Douglas*
Jonathan Gelbart
Tracy Livingston
Frank Riggs

Mine Inspector

Bill Pierce

Joe Hart*

Corporation Commissioner

Sandra Kennedy
Bill Mundell
Kiana Maria Sears

Tom Forese
Rodney Glassman
Jim O’Connor
Justin Olson
Eric Sloan


State Senate

Ralph Atchue

Vince Leach

State House (elect 2)

Hollace Lyon
Barry McCain
Marcela Quiroz

Mark Finchem*
Howell Jones
Bridger Kimball
Bret Roberts


Clerk of Superior Court

Scott McKee
Amanda Stanford*

Justice of the Peace

Lyle Riggs*


Andre LaFond

William Lee Griffin
Glenn Morrison


City Council (elect 3)

Linette Caroselli
Vincent Manfredi*
Bob Marsh
Cynthia Morgan
Paige Richie
Rich Vitiello
Henry Wade*




(Vincent Manfredi is minority owner of InMaricopa.)

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Papers left for the board.

A trio of people interrupted a Maricopa Unified School District board meeting Wednesday to “serve papers” to the governing board as part of a legal complaint filed May 10 in Superior Court. Chauncey Hollingberry, a Buckeye resident who maintains a YouTube channel filming himself confronting various government entities and police officers, had a reported process server place the summons paperwork in front of the board while members were trying to approve the consent agenda at its Wednesday meeting.

When the server ignored the request not to approach the board during the meeting, police were called to a disturbance at the district office. By the time Maricopa Police arrived, Hollingberry and the two others had already left the building. There was no further incident.

Hollingberry’s complaint, in part, states MUSD did not fulfill his public records request when he demanded all records the district might have that mentioned his name and media sites accessed by a specific employee at Santa Cruz Elementary School.


A parked vehicle and an electrical box were damaged Saturday after a woman allegedly struck them with her vehicle and fled the scene, according to police.

The incident reportedly took place near a home on Big Dipper Drive in Province around 5 p.m., May 26.

Witnesses told the Maricopa Police Department a vehicle hit and subsequently pushed a Ford pickup truck approximately 10 feet into an electrical utility box owned by Electrical District No. 3.

The suspected at-fault vehicle was described as a silver SUV being driven erratically in the area.

The truck received damage to its rear passenger-side corner, taillight and bumper. The electrical box was “broken off from the concert base it was on,” according to an MPD police report.

About an hour later, MPD officers located a vehicle in the Villages subdivision matching the description given by witnesses. They eventually made contact with the alleged driver, Rebecca Wallace, at a residence on Ryans Trail.

There, officers noted damage on the passenger side of Wallace’s Chevy Equinox that “matched the damage to” the Ford pickup in Province.

Police said Wallace allegedly admitted to being involved in the accident. However, she then reportedly told an officer she no longer wanted to speak to police.

“(Wallace) was also found to be impaired,” the report alleged.

MPD forwarded charges of class 6 felony criminal damage for the estimated $1,000 worth of repairs to the truck and utility box; failing to fulfill duty on striking an unattended vehicle, a class 3 misdemeanor; and striking a fixture on a highway, also a class 3 misdemeanor.

A DUI charge is pending on the results from Wallace’s blood sample, according to the report.

Province. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

With highs in the high 90s and low 100s, Maricopa has a warm and breezy Memorial Day weekend ahead, according to the National Weather Service.

Today, the temperature is expected to peak at 99 degrees F, and winds will come from the southeast at 5-10 mph in the afternoon. Tonight, for Maricopa High School’s outdoor graduation ceremony, skies will be clear and the low around 65.

Friday is forecast to be sunny with a high near 100 with light breezes staying at 5-10 mph. The night will be mostly clear, and the low will be around 65.

Saturday, expect the breeze to turn to wind of 5-15 mph and gust up to 20 mph during the day, which should be sunny. The high will stay around 94. The overnight low will be around 63.

Sunday‘s outlook is for sunny skies and a high near 96 and barely a breeze at all. The night is expected to be clear with a low around 66.

Monday, Memorial Day, is forecast to be sunny with a high near 100 during the day and most clear at night with a low around 69.

That leads into a triple-digit week to start summer vacation.

A low-cost rabies clinic and dog licensing event is this weekend.


Dog owners can purchase licensing and vaccinations for man’s best friend in Maricopa this weekend.

The Pinal County Animal Care and Control will hold the clinic May 26 at City Hall from 9-11 a.m. City Hall is located at 39700 W. Civic Center Plaza.

Saturday’s event will be the only clinic hosted in Maricopa this year. See others…

License Fees:
Unaltered Dog: $30 (Annual fee)
Altered Dog: $15 (Annual fee)
Three-year Altered Dog License: $35
Senior-Citizen Altered Dog: (Proof of age required)

  • 1-year license: $6
  • 3-year license: $15

Altered Dog late fee: $2 per month
Unaltered Dog late fee: $4 per month

Vaccination Fee:
Rabies: $9

Call 520-509-3555.

Carlos Soliz (PCSO photo)

Witnesses to a verbal fight between a motorist and his pedestrian girlfriend told police the man drove in opposing lanes of traffic while pursuing her.

The May 16 incident initially occurred on Maricopa–Casa Grande Highway at approximately 11:36 a.m.

Police arrested Carlos Soliz, 38, at the Pershing Road intersection after independent witnesses reported his alleged reckless behavior behind the wheel.

A Maricopa Police Department report alleges Soliz pursued the woman and “left the roadway to block her safe passage on the sidewalk,” causing an unreasonable inconvenience and hazard to traffic.

The woman then attempted to run to the opposite side of the roadway. Soliz allegedly exited his vehicle near the highway and Pershing Road and continued to verbally fight with his girlfriend, according to the report.

“(Soliz’s) behavior became serious and disruptive when he prevented her from walking past him until they had a conversation about issues in their relationship,” the reporting officer wrote.

The officer goes on to allege in the report that Soliz’S behavior would have continued against the victim if police hadn’t intervened.

MPD forwarded charges of disorderly conduct (class 1 misdemeanor), obstructing a highway (class 3 misdemeanor) and reckless driving (class 2 misdemeanor) against Soliz and later transported him to Pinal County Jail.

Betty Davis (PCSO photo)

A caller alerted police to a “possible sex offense” involving two allegedly nude people off the side of a local road.

Officers with the Maricopa Police Department responded to the Heritage District area of Garvey Avenue and Loma Road Wednesday around 6:46 p.m. The report refers to the intersection as a “lightly traveled road.”

Going off notes received from the call, MPD was prepared to assess the report of a man and a woman “out in the open naked” in the area near a white van.

“The caller reported the female appeared to be struggling,” according to the report.

However, once on scene, officers found a man wearing pants and a woman fully clothed.

The couple told police they had been “making out” consensually.

After the interviews, officers concluded no crime occurred.

That was before a wants and warrants check was performed. Officers discovered the woman, 43-year-old Betty Davis, was wanted on a valid warrant for failing to pay out of Mesa Justice Court with a $600 bond.

MPD transported Davis to the Pinal County Adult Detention Center.

Michael Moore. (PCSO photo)

A Maricopa man faces felony charges stemming from a shooting Saturday afternoon. As reported earlier, a neighborhood in Desert Cedars was shut down by law enforcement during the investigation.

Michael Moore, 25, is accused of shooting a female in the hand. Maricopa Police Department is still looking for a weapon.

MPD was called to the 44000 block of West Buckhorn Trail at around 1:50 p.m. May 19. Officers found a female with a gunshot wound to her left hand.

She reported told officers she was a passenger in a car being driven by a friend and they were retrieving mail at the address. A single shot was fired into the back window, hitting her hand. She gave officers the description and location of the suspect.

Officers saw a male matching the description getting into a vehicle. They conducted a “high-risk stop,” and Moore was taken into custody without incident.

The female was transported to a hospital. No one else was injured during the event.

Moore was booked in the Pinal County jail on charges of aggravated assault, endangerment and possession of drugs. MPD stated there was “no clear motive,” which is still being investigated.

Moore is scheduled for a hearing in Pinal County Superior Court on May 22.

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The top name for newborn girls remained Emma for the second year in a row.

Liam became the most popular name for boys born in Arizona last year, according to the Social Security Administration. The results were announced May 17.

The name Liam overtook Noah, the favorite in 2016. In 2017, 404 Arizona boys were named Liam compared to 380 brand-new Noahs.

Among girls, Emma remained in the top spot for the second year, this time by a heft margin. According to the data, 446 girls were named Emma to 400 girls named Isabella, which climbed three places on the list.

Liam and Emma were also the most popular names for new babies across the country last year.


Top 10 Popular Baby Names 2017: Arizona


  1. Liam 404
  2. Noah 380
  3. Sebastian 344
  4. Alexander 329
  5. Julian 298
  6. Daniel 296
  7. Oliver 290
  8. Benjamin 272
  9. Logan 271
  10. Michael 268


  1. Emma 446
  2. Isabella 400
  3. Olivia 394
  4. Mia 380
  5. Sophia 274
  6. Ava 261
  7. Evelyn 261
  8. Emily 250
  9. Amelia 244
  10. Charlotte 242

Train passing water tower at sunset. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Maricopa temperatures are expected to creep toward 100 again this week, according to the National Weather Service.

Today, the high is expected to reach 97, but the sunny day will be breezy with winds of 10-15 mph gusting to 25 mph. The overnight low will be around 63 under mostly clear skies.

Tuesday, the forecast sees sunny skies and a high near 94, the coolest of the week. Winds will be 5-15 mph with continuing gusts up to 25 mph. The nighttime low will be around 61.

Wednesday has sunny skies on the menu with a high near 96. The low will be around 65 with skies remaining clear.

Thursday is expected to have the first triple digit result of the week, with a high of 100 and sunny skies. The overnight low will be around 66.

Friday is forecast to be sunny with a high near 102. The night will be mostly clear with a low around 70.

That leads into a weekend that from this distance will be in triple digits with barely a cloud in sight.

A Maricopan was reportedly shot in the hand during an incident in Desert Cedars Saturday afternoon.


According to Maricopa Police Department, a female suffered the wound in a house in the 44000 block of Buckhorn Trail in the Desert Cedars subdivision. MPD and Maricopa Fire/Medical were dispatched at around 1:50 p.m. The street was closed off to traffic.

The victim was transported to a hospital and MPD described the injury as non-life-threatening.

At the beginning of the incident, neighbors reported a white car arrived at the house and the driver left the door open as he ran into the house. MPD reported no other outstanding subject connected to the incident and did not describe how the injury occurred. Police set up a canopy on scene as they continue to investigate the shooting.

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Tony Suares. PCSO photo

Medical crews transported a local woman to the hospital Monday evening after she sustained injuries at the hands of her husband, according to the Maricopa Police Department.

Tony Suares, 37, allegedly caused temporary “but substantial disfigurement” to his wife’s face during an argument that turned physical May 15 at 6:02 p.m. in Alterra.

An MPD police report states Suares struck the victim in the face approximately 10 times with his closed fists.

The reporting officer observed multiple contusions on the woman’s forehead, nose, upper lip and both cheeks.

Suares allegedly screamed profanities while abusing the victim, which reportedly caused her to fear for her life. He was arrested on suspicion of class 4 felony aggravated assault and disorderly conduct, a class 1 misdemeanor.

During questioning by officers, the suspect said he blacked out and denied remembering anything before or after the assault. But Suares allegedly told police his wife “said something to set him off, causing him to punch her,” according to the report.

MPD transported him to the Pinal County Jail, where he remained in custody as of Wednesday afternoon.

Photo courtesy Lori Anthony

Two wild horses reportedly were killed in an early-morning collision on Casa Blanca Road Wednesday.

Photo courtesy Lori Anthony

Lori Anthony of Rancho El Dorado reported on social media her husband was on his way to work around 3 a.m. when a herd of about 75 horses crossing the road collided with him.

“He said they came out of nowhere and plowed into his truck,” Lori told InMaricopa.

His truck was totaled, she said, but her husband was able to walk away from the wreckage. “Sadly, two horses didn’t make it,” Lori stated on the social media site. She posted the information to warn others about horses on that road.

She said he is usually on Casa Blanca Road that time every morning and has never seen the horses there.

“We’ve only ever seen them off [State Route] 347,” she told InMaricopa.