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Staff Reports

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Tortosa is seeing a lot of residential construction during fine weather. Photo by Kyle Norby

After a hot week, Maricopa is due to cool down slightly this weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

Today is sunny with an expected high of 96 degrees F. Winds could gust as high as 20 mph. Tonight will be clear with a low around 60 and continuing winds.

Friday is predicted to be sunny also, with a high near 88. The overnight low will be around 55.

Saturday, the forecast is similar with sunny skies and a high near 89 and calm winds. The nighttime low will likely be around 55.

Sunday, expect a high of 88 under sunny skies. The overnight low will be around 52.

From this distance, next week looks like more of the same, with highs in the low 90s and upper 80s.

 

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Photo by Kyle Norby

The least expensive home sold in Maricopa from Aug. 16 through Sept. 15 was on the market less than three months on the east side of Maricopa. The home backs up to Hartman Road. It sold for $6,900 under the asking price.

1. 17425 N. Avelino Drive, Sorrento

Sold: Aug. 24
Purchase price: $165,000
Square footage: 1,079
Price per square foot: $152.91
Days on market: 76
Builder: Hancock
Year built: 2008
Bedrooms: 3
Bathrooms: 2
Community: Sorrento
Features: Dog run, covered back patio, full master suite
Listing agent: James Mickelson, HomeSmart Success
Selling agent: Maasai Dineh Robinson, Rockstar Realty

2. 43176 W. Elizabeth Ave., Senita …………………………………………$172,000
3. 37067 W. Amalfi Ave., Sorrento ………………………………………..$175,000
4. 36428 W. Barcelona Lane, Tortosa …………………………………….$177,500
5. 40077 W. Bonneau St., Desert Passage ………………………………$178,000


This item appears in the October issue of InMaricopa.

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It’s not all about the President.

The 2020 election, besides having national, state and county races and issues at stake, also includes three seats on Maricopa City Council as well as the mayor’s office. The council seats up for election are currently occupied by Marvin Brown, Julia Gusse and Nancy Smith.

Beginning today, prospective candidates can pick up nomination papers from the City Clerk’s Office at City Hall, 39700 W. Civic Center Plaza. Nomination paperwork must be turned in between March 9 and April 6 to be on the ballot.

Tuesday, the city council passed a resolution officially setting the city election dates for next year.

The Primary Election is Aug. 4, 2020. Voters must be registered by July 6. Any candidates receiving a majority of all the votes cast at the Primary Election will be declared elected without running at the General Election.

The General Election is Nov. 3, 2020. Voters must be registered by Oct. 5.

 

Photo by Victor Moreno

The Maricopa High School swim team defeated Benjamin Franklin Thursday in a home meet.

The boys won 104-43 and the girls won 82-78.

Junior Olivia Byers and freshman Katelyn Owens again led the girls’ team. Byers won the 50-meter freestyle in 27.8 and the 100 free in 1:06.3. Owens won the 100 breaststroke in 1:18.3. Also taking first place was the 200 free relay team of Owens, Aubree Wittemann, Eva Zavala and Byers in 2:04.2.

Second-place finishers for the Rams were Wittemann in the 200 free and the 100 free, Owens in the 200 individual medley, Zavala in the 50 free, Lexie Nordhoff in the 100 butterfly, Shelbee Beecroft in the 100 backstroke, the 200 medley relay team of Beecroft, Owens, Byers and Zavala, and the 400 free relay team of Emily Hollingsworth, Wittemann, Genevieve Pierce and Kaitlyn Crean.

In third place for Maricopa were Emily Fauth in the 200 free, Katelyn James in the 100 fly, Hollingsworth in the 500 free, Zavala in the 100 breast, the 200 medley relay team of Emma Carr, Nordhoff, James and Crean, the 200 free relay team of Crean, Hollingsworth, Shelby Eisenacher and Fauth, and the 400 free relay team of Nordhoff, Eisenacher, Izzy Piwowar and James.

The boys piled up on BF, winning seven of the events. Sophomore Connor Schrader bested his own school record in the 100 breast in 1:11.46, his fourth school record this season, according to head coach Laura Logan. He also won the 200 free in 1:57.6.

Rafe Scoresby won the 200 IM in 2:47.3. Abel Rodriguez won the 100 fly in 1:17.2, and Andy Varga won the 100 free. The 200 medley relay team of Schrader, Joseph Lambert, Rodriguez and Varga won in 2:06.9. The 200 free relay team of Varga, Rodriguez, Tony Nelson and Schrader won in 1:47.6. The 400 free relay team of Rodriguez, Jayden Call, Bryan Perez and Scoresby won in 4:24.5.

Second-place finishers for MHS were Call in the 200 free, Nelson in the 500 free and 100 back, Victor Moreno in the 100 fly, Perez in the 500 free, Lambert in the 100 breast, the 200 free relay team of Call, Jose Perez-Barraza, Fermin Valenzuela and Moreno, and the 400 free relay team of Perez-Barraza, Saul Rodriguez, Alex Borunda and Valenzuela.

Placing third were Varga in the 50 free, Scoresby in the 100 free, Call in the 500, Perez in the 100 back and the 200 medley relay team of Perez, Scoresby, Moreno and Nelson.

So far, three Maricopa swimmers have posted official times that put them in the top 50 in the state’s 5A division. That includes Schrader in three events – the 200 IM, 50 free and 100 back. Byers is top 50 in the 50 free, and Owens in the 100 breast.

Erin Darr (PCSO)

Changing her plea to guilty, a Maricopa mom is awaiting sentencing on two charges of child abuse.

Erin Darr, 36, was taken back into custody by Pinal County Sheriff’s Office Sept. 30 after reaching a plea agreement. She is scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 4 in Superior Court.

Darr was arrested in December. She was originally charged with 10 counts of abuse.

The agreement lets her plead guilty to pushing a victim down the stairs, which is a charge of child abuse under circumstances “likely to produce death or serious injury,” a class 3 felony. Darr also pled guilty to forcing a victim to “eat vomit,” a class 4 felony.

The class 3 felony by law has a sentencing range of 2.5 to seven years, which can change under exceptional circumstances, with a presumptive sentence of 3.5 years. Per the plea agreement, Darr will serve a prison sentence of 3.5 to 7.5 years. The court will make the specific sentence next month.

The class 4 felony has a sentence of one to three years in the criminal code, with a presumptive sentence of 2.5 years. The agreement allows her lifetime supervised probation, during which she can have no contact with the victim. She must also have written permission from the probation department to have any contact with children under the age of 18.

If she rejects probation, the agreement states she will be sentenced to 3.75 years to run consecutively after the other sentence.

Under the terms of the agreement, Darr must pay restitution to all named victims for “all economic loss (including medical and counseling fees), not to exceed $350,000.” There are additional fines of $5,000 and $500.

She must also submit to a DNA test as a special condition.

In exchange for her guilty pleas, the state agrees to drop all other charges, all of which were class 3 and class 4 felony charges of child abuse. Judge Christopher O’Neil has the option of rejecting the plea deal.

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All Maricopa High School runners competing in Friday’s Nike Desert Twilight Cross Country Festival, a multi-state meet in Casa Grande, posted personal-best times.

Competing in the large-school category against almost 50 teams, the boys’ team brought eight runners while the girls ran four.

Senior Quinton Stapleton again led the squad, finishing the varsity race 237th out of 329 in the 5,000 meters (3.1 miles). At 19:27.95, he knocked 24 seconds off his best previous time.

Sophomore Tanis Palmer finished 246th in 19:34.94 in his first race, and fellow soph Xavier Rose was 270th in 20:00.00, which was 51 seconds faster than his previous best. Junior Jovanni Fentes was 275th in 20:06.61, nearly three seconds faster than his results in last year’s Twilight. Rounding out the team’s top five, sophomore Gabriel Garcia was 280th in 20:10.50, his best time by 29 seconds.

Sophomore Charles Liermann was 323rd in 22:21.02, more than a minute faster than his best time, and sophomore Nico McKinely was 329th in 26:20.30, improving his time by nearly six minutes. Running in the freshman race, Alex Blodgett was 226th in 23:24.10, better than his previous best by 22 seconds.

Centennial senior Alexander Coyle won the boys’ varsity race in 15:37.5.

Among the girls, MHS senior Zanaa Ramirez knocked her time down to 21:40.9, her first time under 22 minutes, in placing 91st among 320 runners.

Junior Stella Richter was 304th in 26:56.25, about 20 seconds better than her best time. Senior Coryuna Mitchell bettered her time by more than five minutes by finishing 309th in 27:50.08. Junior Francis Trast ran 310th in 27:59.14.

Ralston Valley (Arvada, Colorado) senior Elizabeth Schweiker won the girls’ varsity race in 18:23.47.

Photo by Kyle Norby

A toddler survived a near-drowning at a house in The Lakes at Rancho El Dorado Friday morning.

The child apparently fell into a backyard pool on Wade Drive. Initial emergency calls indicated the child was not breathing and was turning blue.

Maricopa Fire/Medical Department and Maricopa Police Department responded to the scene. The child was transported to a hospital.

“We are still looking into it,” MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado said. “But so far we believe the child got out through the doggy door and fell into the pool.”

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The Estrellas under clouds. Photo by Kyle Norby

Continued wet weather Thursday is expected to lead into a mild weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

Today, a flood watch continues across the area as 50-percent chance of rain is predicted, with some storms producing heavy rains. Flash flooding will likely result in road closures and cause area washes to run heavily. Unprepared motorists could become trapped within fast-flowing washes.  The day will be partly sunny with a high near 87. The chance of rain will lessen to 30 percent overnight when the low temperature will be around 65.

Friday is forecast to be sunny with a high near 88. The overnight low will again be 65 under clear skies.

Saturday, the day is expected to warm up to 94 degrees with lots of sun and breezes of 5-15 mph. The overnight low will be around 66.

Sunday, the predicted high is near 91, with sunny skies and continued breezes. The nighttime low will be around 62.

The rest of the week looks to have clear skies and temps in the high 80s to low 90s.

ADOT
The National Weather Service in Tucson has issued a dust storm warning for Pinal County, 
including Maricopa, until 4 p.m.
The storm comes with less than a quarter-mile of visibility and wind gusts over 45 mph.

Dust storms lead to dangerous driving conditions with visibility reduced to near zero. If 
driving, avoid dust storms if possible. If caught in one, pull off the road, turn off your 
lights and keep your foot off the brake.

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Josh Turner will perform at the Events Center at Harrah's Ak-Chin Casino in September. (Submitted photo)

Following a California traffic accident that took the life of one of his crew members and injured others, Josh Turner has canceled the rest of his concerts in September, including his appearance at Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino, which was scheduled for Sept. 28.

His tour is working reschedule the concerts.

The concert announcement:

Following the devastating news that one of Josh Turner’s tour buses was involved in a deadly accident in California, we have been told that all remaining shows in September will be rescheduled for a later date.  Josh’s show scheduled for Sept. 28 at Harrah’s Ak-Chin has been cancelled. 

Once rescheduled, tickets to the original show at Harrah’s Ak-Chin will be honored.  A refund process will also be announced at that time for ticketholders that cannot make the rescheduled date. 

Josh Turner and his road family have suffered a devastating loss.  We send our heartfelt condolences to Josh, his band and crew.  

 

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Photo by Kyle Norby

A weekend of temperatures in the high 90s is ahead for Maricopa, according to the National Weather Service.

Tonight will be clear with a low around 69 degrees F and winds gusting as high as 20 mph.

Friday is forecast to be sunny with a high near 99 wile breezes maintain a 5-10 mph pace. The overnight low is expected to be around 67.

Saturday, the day is likely to be sunny with a high of 97. The nighttime low will be abound 68 under mostly clear skies.

Sunday is looking at high temperature near 99 followed by a night with a low around 73 as rain clouds move into the area with a 30-percent chance of rain.

The likelihood of rain increases to 50 percent Monday as autumn arrives, with rain possibly continuing into Tuesday.

Police blocked traffic in the neighborhood after the incident.

The couple involved in a suspected murder-suicide in Desert Cedars Wednesday have been identified as Matthew and Vanessa Palma Padzunas, both 37.

Matthew Padzunas

They were reportedly estranged. Matthew Padzunas is believed to have killed Vanessa and then himself, friends said.

Maricopa Police were called to the home around midday. They continue to investigate how and why events transpired.

They leave behind three young children, who have been taken in by family. Though they have no material needs, those wishing to contribute may drop off gift cards at the InMaricopa office, 44400 W. Honeycutt Road, Suite 101.

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help offset costs for Vanessa Palma’s funeral and travel expenses for the children to attend the funeral in New Jersey.

A family tragedy played out in Desert Cedars Wednesday.

Maricopa Police Department is investigating what appears to be a murder-suicide on Windrose Drive in Desert Cedars.

Police were called to the residence around noon on the report of a possible suicide. They were also informed of a possible second victim.

“At this time we are not going to release any further information as to respect of surviving family members,” MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado said.

Police blocked access to neighborhood traffic before entering the home just before 1 p.m. Children not at home at the time of the incident were located and taken care of as MPD worked with friends and family.

Learn more

Maricopa Unified School District notified parents over the weekend of a “potential threat of a weapon on campus on Monday” at the high school.

The alleged threat was made off-campus Friday night. MUSD told parents it was working with Maricopa Police Department and had not substantiated the threat.

Classes will take place as normal on Monday, but MPD plans to increase patrols.

MUSD reminded parents threats against a school facility, even in jest, can be prosecuted beyond school discipline. “Please take this opportunity to talk with your children about the consequences of making statements of a threatening or dangerous nature at any time,” MUSD advised parents in its notification.

The alleged threat comes after days of student fights on and off campus, also involving MPD.

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The Maricopa High School volleyball team started its season with two wins and a loss in Arizona Interscholastic Association play, while in the Canyon Athletic Conference, Sequoia Pathway has built a record of 5-1.

Photo by Kyle Norby

MHS soundly defeated Camelback in straight sets, 25-13, 25-14, 25-9. That was followed by a 3-1 home victory over a team they lost to last season, Betty H. Fairfax, with sets of 25-10, 25-13, 13-25, 25-22. Thursday, the girls lost to Verrado in straight sets, 17-25, 12-25, 13-25.

Meanwhile, the Pumas walked over Basis-Peoria to start their season, 3-0. They also took down Basis-Chandler in three, 25-13, 25-24, 25-4, and then Phoenix College Prep in straight sets, 25-20, 25-16, 25-17. Pathway defeated San Tan Charter in five sets, 3-2, but had the tables turned on them against Heritage Academy-Gateway, which handed them their first loss, 2-3.

The Pumas had a walkover win against Imagine-Coolidge, which failed to show for Thursday’s match.

In its first season of competition in CAA, playing in an independent region, Heritage-Maricopa has posted straight-set losses to Southwest Leadership and Basis-Ahwatukee.

Photo by Kyle Norby

 

Pinal County food inspectors looked at 31 Maricopa establishments, including several schools, from July 18 through Aug. 18 and gave all but one a clean bill of health.

Cilantro’s received a “Satisfactory” mark after the discovery of a walk-in cooler not keeping food at the required maximum 41 degrees. Menudo that was found at 60 degrees was discarded.

EXCELLENT [No violations found]
Brooklyn Boys Italian Restaurant
Burger King
Butterfield Elementary
Children’s Learning Adventure
Chipotle Mexican Grill
Culver’s
Desert Wind Middle School
The Duke at Rancho El Dorado
Dutch Bros
Firehouse Subs
Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers
Leading Edge Academy
Li’s Garden
Maricopa Head Start
Maricopa High School
Maricopa High School – Concessions
Maricopa High School – Culinary Arts
Maricopa Wells Middle School
McDonald’s (John Wayne Parkway)
Native Grill and Wings
The New HQ
Pima Butte Elementary
Raceway Bar & Grill
Rosati’s Pizza
Saddleback Elementary
Santa Cruz Elementary
Santa Rosa Elementary
Sunrise Café
Sunrise Preschool
Wingstop

SATISFACTORY [Violations corrected during inspection]
Cilantro’s Mexican Cocina

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT [Critical items noted during inspection cannot be corrected immediately requiring follow-up inspection]
None

UNACCEPTABLE [Gross, unsanitary conditions necessitating the discontinuation of service]
None


This item appears in the September issue of InMaricopa.

Heritage Academy received a new address. Photo by Kyle Norby

 

Domino’s Pizza, 20046 N. John Wayne Parkway, is moving to the former Peñascos location, 20024 N. John Wayne Parkway in The Shops at Maricopa Village. The pizza store received a commercial tenant improvement permit after getting approval to do some demolition work in the new place.

Heritage Academy received a permit for a fire sprinkler system and fire alarm in its A building and a commercial permit for the 16,101-square-foot academic building. It also convinced the city council to allow a name change of its street. Formerly on Lucera Lane, the new charter school is now on Heroes Way in Glennwilde.

Richmond-American Homes started a grading and drainage permit for its driveway extensions at 44307 W. Palo Nuez St. in Palo Brea to accommodate a three-car entry.

Meritage Homes is converting a garage into a sales office at 19769 N. MacNeil Court in Homestead North. Meritage also received a standard plan review for lots in Province. K. Hovnanian Homes was allowed a temporary construction trailer at 46172 W. Mountain View Road in Maricopa Meadows.

Sacate Pellet Mill received a commercial permit for a pre-engineered metal building at 38743 W. Cowtown Road. The new business also received a permit for its fire sprinkler in its hay office.

Apex Motor Club was allowed to place a $35,000 pre-manufactured building on its property at 22408 N. Ralston Road through a factory-built commercial permit. The building is 2,500 square feet.

Sequoia Pathway Academy, 19265 N. Porter Road, used a commercial alteration permit to restore a modular bathroom after work on a mold problem.

The Jamie Brisbin Agency of State Farm moved into office space in Bradley Butz’s building at 19395 N. John Wayne Parkway, received a new tenant final inspection July 24.

In putting in an electric vehicle charging station, Volkswagen received a commercial foundation-only permit as “at risk” at 17169 N. Murphy Road.

Hope Women’s Center, 45978 W. McDavid Road, received a commercial tenant improvement permit for work contracted by Habitat for Humanity of Central Arizona.

Simon Med Imaging received a permit for a fire alarm in its new office at 44555 W. Edison Road, Suite B.


This item appears in the September issue of InMaricopa.

‘We will do better’

MPD Chief Steve Stahl

 

A major mistake by the Maricopa Police Department in July earned a live apology from the police chief.

“We messed up,” he announced at his monthly Coffee with the Chief, which is carried on the department’s Facebook page and generally involves information on current events and safety tips for the community.

It was a mea culpa from a department that does not like to air details of its inner workings in personnel matters.

Maricopa Unified School District allowed MPD to carry out training exercises on the Butterfield Elementary campus during the summer break. The July 3 training involved a K-9 searching for narcotics, but one small packet was inadvertently left behind in a room, an error that was not discovered until after school started.

“It’s our fault,” Chief Steve Stahl said. “This is on us.”

Superintendent Tracey Lopeman notified parents of the situation July 25 after the school had to go into “shelter-in-place” mode while police searched the premises. She said the district would re-evaluate its agreement with MPD.

As Lopeman and Stahl both said the relationship was important, MPD was re-evaluating, too.

“From a department standpoint, we are going to evaluate our policies and procedures to make sure that they are up to standards with other agencies that have K-9 programs,” MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado said.

Though Stahl apologized to Lopeman personally, he said he needed to apologize to her, the staff, students, parents and community publicly because of the potential of what could have happened.

It turned out a teacher had discovered the packet, wrapped and reportedly looking like an old sandwich, on July 15 and threw it out.

“We have higher expectations of ourselves and have taken measures to correct the issue,” Stahl said.

He said if any good came out of the situation it was that no children were ever in any danger because the school was out during the time between the training and the discovery of the narcotics.

“I can tell you this; the officer involved in this scenario has children, has children that attend MUSD schools, and is extremely remorseful for what occurred and has taken full responsibility,” Stahl said. “And we will press on from here.”

He expressed regret that parents experienced added apprehension and stress over the incident. “For that, we apologize, and we will do better.”


This story appears in part in the September issue of InMaricopa. For clarification, MPD released information publicly about what occurred at Butterfield shortly after MUSD informed parents of the situation. 

Update: Maricopa Police reported they gave up the search after an hour scouring the neighborhood. They did not offer a name or description of the subject.


Maricopa Police Department is looking for a suspect who fled on foot in the area of Smith-Enke and Porter roads.

MPD had been called by Adult Probation to pick up the individual at a house on Colby Drive. He was wanted on outstanding warrants for nonviolent offenses. However, when police went to the home he ran away.

At this time, the neighbors are not considered to be in danger. Police are not asking for the public’s help in finding him but do ask residents to stay out of the way of the responding officers and let them work as they canvass the area.

If anyone does see anyone exhibiting suspicious behavior, such as climbing over walls, they are asked to call 911 and report it.

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Photo by Kyle Norby

Maricopa weather is heading right back to an excessive heat warning for Labor Day weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

Today is sunny with an expected high of 106 degrees F. Tonight will be mostly clear with a low around 81.

Friday, just in time for home football games by Maricopa High School and Sequoia Pathway, another excessive heat warning is in place from 10 a.m. Friday to 8 p.m. Saturday as the high temperature soars to 110. The nighttime low will only get down to 82, and relative humidity is expected to be over 40 percent.

Saturday is forecast to be sunny and a little hotter, with an expected high of 111. The night may be partly cloudy with a low around 81. Excessive heat leads to an increase in heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Heat stroke has already been deadly in Pinal County this month. Please take precautions to lessen the impact of the extreme heat.

Sunday, the heat eases off slightly, with a high near 108 under sunny skies. Overnight, there is a 20-percent chance of showers and a low around 79.

Labor Day is forecast to be mostly sunny with a high near 106 followed by an evening that has a 20-percent chance of rain. That leads into a week of temperatures below 107 and continued possibilities for rain.

An officer checks out an Acura while the driver is arrested behind him in the window's reflection after an afternoon collision on John Wayne Parkway. Photos by Kyle Norby

A rollover accident in the southbound lanes of John Wayne Parkway north of Smith-Enke Road stopped traffic next to Cobblestone Farms at the beginning of rush hour.

The incident involved two vehicles at the intersection of JWP and Cobblestone Drive. An Acura collided with a Nissan Armada, and the Acura rolled up on its side.

First responders checked out both drivers at the scene. The driver of the Acura was cuffed by Maricopa Police Department on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

According to MPD, the Acura swerved to avoid another vehicle and clipped the Armada, which suffered tire and back end damage.

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Photo by Kyle Norby

After setting a record of 114 degrees on Wednesday, 10 degrees above normal, Maricopa can look forward to a slightly cooler, possibly damper weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

Today, there is a 20-percent chance of showers and thunderstorms while the high temperature reaches 110 degrees F. Tonight should be mostly clear with a low of 80.

Friday has a sunny forecast, expecting a high of about 105. The overnight low may be around 79 with the return of a 20-percent chance of rain after midnight.

Saturday is expected to be sunny with a high of just 102. The nighttime will be breezy, including gusts up to 20 mph, with a low 79.

Sunday may be mostly sunny with a high around 103 and light breezes. The overnight low will be around 79.

That leads to a week with increasingly warm temperatures.

 

Veronica and Corey Masterson were indicted by a grand jury. PCSO photos

 

A pre-trial conference has been set for Veronica and Corey Masterson, a Maricopa couple accused of child abuse.

Friday, the couple, who are free on bonds of $50,000 each, appeared together in front of Judge Jason Holmberg. Though they have separate attorneys, only one attorney was in court to push the proceedings forward.

Veronica Masterson, 38, and Corey Masterson, 37, still have a hearing set in October, but their pre-trial conference was placed on Nov. 8.

They are accused of abusing their three children from November 2017 to November 2018 and were indicted on felony counts in December. In law enforcement records, the children accused the pair of hitting and kicking them, taping their mouths shut and depriving them of food and water.

The couple lost an infant child in 2013, and Veronica Masterson’s four oldest children perished in a fire last year in Illinois.

 

Maricopa Police Department had calls from two schools this week for very different reasons.

Thursday night, Leading Edge Academy reported a SnapChat message by a student stating he was going to “shoot up the school.” Police officers met with the student and a parent at their home.

According to MPD, the student admitted to making threats but said he was joking. Officers determined “he did not have the means to carry out the threats.”

This morning, a “suspicious man” in a car was reported at a bus stop in Homestead trying to approach a student on her way to school at Desert Wind Middle School. He reportedly tried to get her to enter his vehicle. MPD was still investigating this afternoon.

The man was described as being in his 30s or 40s with dark skin and wearing a green shirt with white stripes. He was driving a vehicle “similar to a tan, four-door, Honda Accord.”

Anyone with information is asked to call MPD’s non-emergency number, 520-316-6800.

MUSD reported the incident to police and distributed the information to parents along with stranger-danger tips.

Advice for children:

  • Always be aware of your surroundings and report suspicious activity immediately to a parent, responsible adult, teacher, school administrator, or police officer.
  • If you are approached by a stranger and offered anything, say NO and tell an adult immediately.
  • If a stranger approaches you at a bus stop, tell the bus driver immediately that the person is a stranger.
  • Never walk alone. Always walk in pairs or with a group.
  • Take well-traveled, open routes to school. Avoid alleys or poorly lit areas.
  • Never go anywhere with someone you don’t know.
  • Do not speak to strangers; do not respond to calls or comments from strangers.
  • Stay away from an adult who is asking children for help, as in seeking directions, or looking for a lost puppy.
  • Don’t let a stranger into your home.
  • If you have any fear of an adult stranger speaking to you, walk away.
  • If someone grabs your wrist, make your arm spin like a windmill; yell as loud as you can; then run.
  • If you’re riding your bicycle, keep the bike between you and the adult.

Advice for parents:

  • Keep young children at play outside your home or in the park within view.
  • Make sure that outdoor activities are supervised.
  • Teach your children that they can use any telephone, even a pay phone, to call 911.
  • Teach your children that it’s okay to say “no” to what they sense something is wrong.
  • Have your child photographed at least once a year, more often if he/she is under 5 years old.

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Maricopa will be baking this weekend.

With temperatures continuing to sizzle, the National Weather Service has extended the excessive heat warning through 8 p.m. Friday in western Pinal County.

An excessive heat warning mans that a period of very hot temperatures, even by local standards, will occur. Overexposure can cause heat cramps and heat exhaustion to develop and, without intervention, can lead to heat stroke.

Stay indoors and seek air-conditioned buildings. Those engaging in outdoor work or athletic activity should be closely monitored. If engaging in outdoor activity, take longer and more frequent breaks and avoid the hottest parts of the day. Never leave kids or pets unattended in cars.

Today is sunny and hot with a high near 114 and little wind. Tonight will be clear with a low around 81.

Friday’s forecast is also sunny and hot with a high near 111. The night is expected to be mostly clear with alow around 80 and winds of 5-10 mph.

Saturday is expected to be sunny with a high near 109. The overnight low will be around 80 under mostly clear skies.

Sunday will likely see a few clouds with a partly sunny forecast and a high of 109. The night will have partly cloudy skies and a low around 81.

Next week will grow progressively hotter with the possibility of another heat warning.

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Photo by Kyle Norby

A house in Glennwilde’s Magnolia section was the most expensive home sold in Maricopa from June 16 through July 15. It gained 42 percent in value since it last sold two years ago. The two-story house with a pool next to a common area was recently remodeled and includes roomy bedrooms and a three-car garage.

  1. 42405 W. Somerset Drive, Glennwilde

Sold: June 29
Purchase price: $323,000
Square footage: 3,301
Price per square foot: $97.84
Days on market: 66
Builder: Centex
Year built: 2006
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 3
Community: Glennwilde
Features: Heated pool, covered patio with built-in barbecue, bamboo flooring, granite countertops
Listing agent: Tina Clowes, The Maricopa Real Estate Company
Selling agent: Deanne Brevik, Keller Williams Realty

  1. 37698 W. Vera Cruz Drive, Rancho Mirage ……………………………. $322,000
  2. 40772 W. Pryor Lane, Homestead ………………………………………… $310,000
  3. 43311 W. Kramer Lane, The Villages at Rancho El Dorado ……. $300,000
  4. 20695 N. Bustos Way, The Villages at Rancho El Dorado ………. $300,000

    This item appears in the August issue of InMaricopa.

A local man died, and two people were injured in a crash Sunday night.

According to Maricopa Police Department, the one-vehicle rollover occurred near the junction of Maricopa-Casa Grande Highway and Hartman Road at around 10:30 p.m. The three occupants were ejected.

The male driver was deceased at the scene. A female passenger received a serious injury to her arm, according to MPD, and the other female passenger had non-life-threatening injuries.

“Impairment and speed are considered a factor,” MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado stated.

The identities have not been released, though occupants were apparently from Ak-Chin Indian Community and Thunderbird Farms.

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Maricopa will be under an excessive heat watch this week, according to the National Weather Service as temperatures soar.

The watch is in place Tuesday morning through Thursday evening. High temperatures are expected to reach at least 113 midweek. Excessive heat can lead to heat stroke, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and other related illnesses. Heat stroke can lead to death.

Stay indoors and seek air-conditioned buildings. Drink water, more than usual, and avoid dehydrating alcoholic, sugary or caffeinated drinks. Dress for the heat – lightweight and light-colored clothing. Eat small meals and eat more often.

Monitor those with a higher vulnerability to heat, including small children. Check in on family, friends, and neighbors, especially the elderly. If engaging in outdoor activity, take longer and more frequent breaks and avoid the hottest parts of the day. Never leave kids or pets unattended in cars.

Today, the expected high temperature is 107. The nighttime low will be around 78.

Tuesday, the high is forecast to be 109 under sunny skies. The overnight low will be around 82.

Wednesday, prepare for a sunny and hot day, with a high near 113 and little wind. The night is expected to be partly cloudy with a low around 83.

Thursday is forecast to be sunny and hot with a high near 113. The overnight low will likely be around 83.

Friday cools down a bit for a high of 110. Winds are expected to pick up, gusting as high as 20 mph. That will continue into evening, when the low is expected to be around 82.

The weekend will still be slightly above normal but below 110.

Notah Begay III (right) gives Ak-Chin Chairman Robert Miguel advice on his golf game. Photos by Raquel Hendrickson

Retired PGA golfer and current NBC/Golf Channel analyst Notah Begay III hosted clinics for children and adults Saturday morning as part of a weekend event at Ak-Chin Southern Dunes. Begay, a Stanford graduate and four-time winner on the PGA Tour, is the most successful Native American golfer in history. He told participants he was excited to see the development of Native-owned enterprises like those in the Ak-Chin Indian Community. He said any golfer competing at the top level knew about Southern Dunes. He gave participants tips for improving their short game and spoke about his foundation and N7. He also told tales on his long-time friend and college teammate Tiger Woods.

Maricopa's weekend weather will see a mix of clouds and sun. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Maricopa’s weekend weather is expected to become a little cooler than recent weeks and even drop below the normal high of 105, according to the National Weather Service.

Today is mostly sunny with a forecast high of 107. Tonight will be mostly cloudy with a low around 83. A high-pollution advisory remains in effect in Pinal County.

Friday will likely be partly sunny with a high near 106. Clouds will move in during the evening, bringing a 20-percent chance of rain after midnight and low around 82.

Saturday‘s high will be near 101 under mostly sunny skies. The 20-percent chance of precipitation returns in the evening as the low drops to around 80.

Sunday has a 20-percent chance of rain during the day and an expected high of 101. The evening will be mostly clear with a low around 80.

Next week, daily high temperatures will climb back over 105 under clear skies.