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arrest

Bobby Tyler. PCSO photo

A man was arrested May 25 for allegedly driving and then crashing a stolen vehicle that had been painted with house paint in an attempt to disguise it.

Bobby Tyler, 31, allegedly wrecked the stolen, originally red, 2007 Chevrolet Equinox on May 15 after a confrontation with a security guard in the Senita subdivision, according to a report from the Maricopa Police Department.

Tyler was approached by Senita security guard Jonathan Lounsbury at around 1:15 a.m. after Lounsbury spotted the “white” SUV parked at a closed community park, according to the MPD report.

After a brief verbal exchange with Lounsbury, Tyler reportedly drove away at a “high rate of speed.” The vehicle eventually crashed on Honeycutt Road not far from Senita. When police arrived, the vehicle had been abandoned.

Officers responding to the accident conducted a standard registration search and discovered the vehicle was reported stolen out of Casa Grande on May 7.

Lounsbury, who later identified Tyler in a photo line-up, also identified the SUV to be the one Tyler was allegedly driving.

Earlier the same night of the accident, Tyler had reportedly contacted an officer while stopped at the intersection of John Wayne Parkway and Maricopa-Casa Grande Highway, asking if it was OK to make a right turn in the construction zone.

The officer, who noted the SUV had what appeared to be “white primer paint,” advised Tyler on how to handle the right turn. Without an indication of unlawful activity, the officer carried on with patrol.

MPD spokesperson Ricardo Alvarado said an anonymous tip led to Tyler’s apprehension 10 days later at Copper Sky.

“We received a tip Tyler was going to be at the skate park,” Alvarado said. “We had dealings with him in the past so we were able to ID him and apprehend him without incident.”

Tyler allegedly told police he had “obtained the vehicle in exchange for drugs.”

Tyler was charged with unlawful use of means of transportation, a Class 6 felony punishable by six months to two years in prison. He is on parole after serving 10 years for manslaughter caused by recklessness  in a 2005 case in Stanfield.

MPD photo

Shaun Benally (PCSO photo)

A native man was arrested in Maricopa on April 5 for possession of a rare psychedelic drug, according to a Maricopa Police Department report.

The man, 36-year-old Shaun Benally, was contacted by police after reportedly being “aggressive toward citizens,” near Bashas’ on John Wayne Parkway, the report said.

Officers arrested Benally after an ID check revealed he had four outstanding warrants – two from the city of Maricopa for failure to appear, and two extraditable warrants out of New Mexico.

MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado said a subsequent search of his person revealed a dried green substance an arresting officer initially mistook for marijuana.

Another Maricopa officer with extensive experience working with native communities in the Southwest indicated the substance was likely the hallucinogenic cactus known as peyote.

A sample of the substance was sent to the Arizona Department of Public Safety lab to be tested. However, before results came back, Benally admitted the substance was in fact peyote.

The small spineless cactus has been used for millennia as a spiritual sacrament by several native groups in the southwest United States and northern Mexico, and both federal and state law permit its ceremonial use by card-carrying members of Native American tribes.

In Arizona, there is no limitation as to which tribes can hold ceremonies using peyote. Its recreational use is, however, prohibited even among tribal members.

Despite being of Native ancestry, Alvarado said, Benally did not claim to be using the substance for any ceremonial purpose.

Alvarado said it is somewhat rare to find someone using peyote, either ceremonially or recreationally, though it is usually obvious if they are using it for a religious purpose or not.

“If someone were using it for a ceremony, a burial or a wake, it would look like it was a ceremonial purpose,” Alvarado said. “Even then, we would have to determine if they were a registered tribal member.”

Possession of peyote for non-ceremonial use is a class 6 felony in Arizona, punishable by one year in prison.

Gustavo Olivo, 17, and Arthur Eric Magana, 16, have been formally charged with the felony of first-degree murder by the Pinal County Attorney's Office. (PCSO photos)

A 20-year-old man living in an unincorporated area south of Maricopa was shot to death Nov. 7 and two teenage suspects have been indicted.

Wyatt Miller died of multiple gunshot wounds, according to the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office. He apparently knew the two teens involved.

Monday, Gustavo Olivo, 17, and Arthur Eric Magana, 16, both of Maricopa, were indicted by a grand jury on charges of first-degree murder and armed robbery. They are listed at addresses within the city limits.

PCSO was called to a residence in the 54200 block of West Cardinal Road just before 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 7. The location is a couple of miles north of Interstate 8.

The caller said somebody was shooting at her and her husband from outside the house. She then said her husband went outside to check.

When deputies arrived, said to be within minutes of being dispatched, they found Miller dead inside a 2001 Chevy truck in the front yard. He was described as having “numerous gunshot wounds.”

Two sets of shoe prints were followed to a residence in the 2300 block of South Oak Road.

“Once at the residence, the homeowner advised the two subjects ran into the back room of his home,” Sheriff Paul Babeu stated. “Deputies went inside of the residence, and the two suspects were taken into custody. The shoe prints on the suspects matched the pattern of the shoe prints at the scene. One of the suspects had blood on his shoes as well.”

Babeu said robbery appears to be the motive and the three were acquainted.

He said the investigation indicated Olivo and Magana were inside Miller’s vehicle when one of them shot Miller several times. They allegedly then stole his money and other property.

Arraignment for the juvenile suspects is scheduled for Nov. 18 at Pinal County Superior Court.

Perry T. Taylor is accused of grappling with an MPD officer. (PCSO photo)

A Maricopa Police Officer was released from a Chandler hospital after sustaining minor injuries during a physical altercation which took place while conducting a traffic stop Oct. 21.

Officer John Soanes initiated a stop at around 6 a.m. on a vehicle that he had seen allegedly driving recklessly down John Wayne Parkway. After following for a short time the vehicle came to a stop in the QT parking lot at Edison Road, where the driver then exited the vehicle and began to engage in a verbal confrontation with Soanes, according to the MPD report.

The driver, a Maricopa man now identified as Perry T. Taylor, refused to provide the officer with identification, and when Soanes attempted to detain Taylor until positive identification could be made Taylor became combative and a struggle ensued, the report stated.

Officer Soanes’s glasses were broken, and he sustained minor injuries during the confrontation but in the end was able to subdue Taylor. Soanes’ injuries were treated at a Chandler hospital, and he was released later that day.

Taylor was arrested and initially charged with five different crimes, including aggravated assault on a peace officer, dangerous driving, criminal damage, failure to identify and failure to comply.

The official complaint from the County Attorney’s Office charges Taylor with assaulting Soanes, a Class 5 felony, criminal damage and failure to comply with a police officer, both Class 2 felonies.

 

 

The traffic stop on John Wayne Parkway drew a crowd but resulted in a standard drug arrest. Photo by Michelle Sorensen

By Ethan McSweeney

Maricopa police arrested a woman on State Route 347 on charges of possession of methamphetamine and marijuana after a traffic stop on June 21.

Police pulled over a black Dodge Dart on SR 347 south of Honeycutt Avenue around 4:39 p.m., according to a Maricopa Police Department report. The officer didn’t say in the report why the Dart was pulled over, MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado said.

Four people were in the Dart at the time. The front seat passenger in the car, Veronica Santana, 46, was found to be in possession of methamphetamine, marijuana and drug paraphernalia, according to the report.

A Border Patrol unit arrived at the scene because Maricopa police needed a K9 unit for a “sniff search,” Alvarado said, and Border Patrol had the closest canine.

Santana was charged with possession of marijuana, a dangerous drug and drug paraphernalia, the report read.

Santana also had a felony warrant for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia from Pinal County Superior Court with a $500 bond, according to the report.

Police booked Santana into Pinal County Jail.

By Ethan McSweeney

Maricopa police arrested a man after finding marijuana and methamphetamine in the trunk of his car during a traffic stop in the early morning hours of June 27.

A Maricopa Police Department officer pulled over the car belonging to Emmanuel Hernandez near Smith-Enke Road and North Vintage Drive around 1 a.m. for making a wide right turn, according to a police report. After approaching the car, the officer noticed a strong smell of marijuana coming from the car, according to the report.

Hernandez, 19, told the officer that his friends had been smoking marijuana in the car earlier, the report read.

After the officer asked Hernandez to step out of the vehicle, however, Hernandez said “he wanted to be honest” and told the officer he had marijuana and methamphetamine in the trunk, according to the report.

Hernandez told the officer he could open the trunk, the report read, and the officer allegedly found four baggies of methamphetamine and one baggie of marijuana. Hernandez then told the officer he had another small baggie of methamphetamine in his sock, according to the report.

The methamphetamine weighed in at 6.7 grams and the marijuana weighed 27.3 grams.

Hernandez also allegedly told the officer that he was on probation. Police charged Hernandez with possession of marijuana, drug paraphernalia and a dangerous drug.