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Police: Homeless woman arrested in deadly Phoenix house fire

PHOENIX (AP) — Authorities say a homeless woman has been arrested in connection with a deadly house fire in Phoenix. Police announced Monday that 35-year-old Jamie Fillmore was booked into jail on suspicion of criminal damage, endangerment and reckless burning. Court records show Fillmore told police that she was smoking drugs outside the house with a propane torch. It’s unclear if Fillmore has a lawyer yet. Her bail has been set at $100,000, with her next court appearance scheduled for May 4. A man’s body was found in the home by firefighters after the flames were extinguished. The victim hasn’t been identified yet and the cause of death will be determined by the Maricopa County Office of the Medical Examiner.


1st death from the coronavirus surfaces in Arizona prisons

PHOENIX (AP) — The first fatality from the coronavirus in Arizona prisons came two weeks ago when a 64-year-old inmate with diabetes died at a hospital in Tucson. Pima County Medical Examiner Gregory Hess said Joseph Assyd died as a result of COVID-19 after suffering a respiratory infection. Over the last week, corrections officials have declined to say whether any prisoners had died from the virus. Assyd was serving a life sentence for convictions in 1995 for murder and kidnapping. Forty-four of the nearly 42,000 Arizona prisoners have tested positive for the virus.


2 bodies with gunshot wounds found in blaze in Claypool

CLAYPOOL, Ariz. (AP) — Authorities in eastern Arizona are investigating a double homicide after two bodies with gunshot wounds were discovered in a fire. Gila County Sheriff J. Adam Shepherd says deputies and nearby police departments responded to a residence in Claypool on Monday around 7:20 a.m. Firefighters had extinguished a blaze and discovered the bodies of two adults. Investigators say it appears they died from the gunshot wounds. The Arizona Department of Public Safety and Pinal County sheriff’s deputies conducted a traffic stop on a person of interest. Shepherd did not say if an arrest was made but confirmed there was no threat to the community.


Habitat safeguard for snakes in Arizona, New Mexico proposed

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Conservationists are having a mixed reaction to a proposal from federal wildlife officials to protect critical habitats of endangered garter snakes in Arizona and New Mexico. The Center for Biological Diversity said Monday the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposition is somewhat of a relief. One of the group’s attorneys says the number of acres that would receive protection is far less than previously stated. Under the proposal, more than 18,700 acres of critical habitat for narrow-headed garter snakes and nearly 27,800 acres for the northern Mexican garter snake would be safeguarded across both states. Conservationists say both snake species have been on the brink of extinction for years.


Arizona has 1 day with no reported coronavirus deaths

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Contractors overseen by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are completing work on a closed Phoenix hospital planned to house coronavirus patients. The move comes even as there are signs a spike of cases may not emerge in Arizona and Gov. Doug Ducey nears a decision on whether to ease his closure and stay at home orders. The $4.1 million rehabilitation of St. Luke’s Medical Center should be done by the end of the week. Health Services officials on Monday reported no new virus deaths for the first time in a month, holding steady at 275. Confirmed cases statewide climbed to 6,716 after 190 new cases were added.


California man dies in jet ski-boat collision in Arizona

YUMA, Ariz. (AP) — A man jet skiing over the weekend on the Colorado River in Arizona was killed after he collided with a boat. The Yuma County Sheriff’s Office identified the jet-skier as 20-year-old Tristen Hays of Lakeside, California. According to deputies, the incident happened Saturday afternoon north of Martinez Lake. Investigators say the boat and Hays were traveling parallel to each other when Hays veered into the boat’s path for unknown reasons. Hays suffered fatal injuries. The case is pending further investigation. Investigators have yet to determine if alcohol was a contributing factor.


Man who allegedly shot, wounded 3 police officers in custody

CHANDLER, Ariz. (AP) — Police in Chandler say a man is in custody after allegedly shooting and wounding three police officers before barricading himself in a home. They say the man allegedly set the house on fire around noon Monday before fleeing the scene on foot. He was captured a short time later. Police say the incident began about 1 a.m. when officers on patrol spotted a suspicious person. The man ran and then turned around and fired several shots. Police say the officer was treated and released from a hospital. The second shooting occurred about 7 a.m. when police saw officers tracked the suspect to a Chandler home when the man opened fire. Police say two officers were shot but the bullets didn’t penetrate their body armor.


Prosecutors mulling death penalty in Flagstaff boy's death

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Prosecutors will have more time to weigh asking that the parents and grandmother of a 6-year-old Flagstaff boy who died in their care receive the death penalty. The Arizona Daily Sun reported Sunday that a judge extended the deadline for a decision to mid-summer. Prosecutors say it’s been harder to get information they need because of the coronavirus. Elizabeth Archibeque, Anthony Martinez and Ann Martinez pleaded not guilty in the case last month. All three were arrested March 2 after Ann Martinez called 911 and said she thought her grandson was dead. They later were indicted on first-degree murder, kidnapping and child abuse charges.