Arizona HOA bans Christmas decorations this season

A homeowners association in Arizona is getting some Christmas jeers after they reportedly decided to ban any outdoor decorations this season. The resident of a condo complex in North Phoenix received a memo this week saying they're not allowed to put up any decorations on the outside of their homes this year. “I really did … Continue reading “Arizona HOA bans Christmas decorations this season”

A homeowners association in Arizona is getting some Christmas jeers after they reportedly decided to ban any outdoor decorations this season.

The resident of a condo complex in North Phoenix received a memo this week saying they're not allowed to put up any decorations on the outside of their homes this year.

“I really did feel sad to come into ours, which is usually lit up with beautiful decorations, and there was nothing, so it did kind of feel a little sad,” condo resident Lorene Jarvis told FOX10.

Pinnacle HOA's attorneys told the news station the ban this season is due to a “large ongoing paint/stucco repair and maintenance project.”

“After consulting the firm performing the project, the Association determined this was the best way to keep the project on track because decorations may interfere with access to the relevant areas,” the HOA said.

A wreath on a resident's door, for instance, would cause interference as the paint project includes painting doors.

Jarvis said there is a $100 fine for breaking the rules.

“And every 10 days that you keep it up, it’s another fine,” she said.

Lucia I. Suarez Sang is a Reporter for Follow her on Twitter @luciasuarezsang

Border Patrol agent won’t be tried a third time in teen’s death

PHOENIX – Federal prosecutors on Thursday said they would not pursue another trial against a Border Patrol agent who fatally shot a Mexican teenager across a border fence but who was twice acquitted.

A filing in court shows prosecutors say they will no longer pursue the case against Lonnie Swartz, the agent who killed 16-year-old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez in October 2012.

"Agent Swartz is relieved and looking forward to moving on with his life without the threat of criminal prosecution hanging over his head," his attorney, Sean Chapman, said in an email to The Associated Press.

In April, Swartz was acquitted of second-degree murder, but a jury deadlocked on manslaughter charges. Prosecutors re-tried Swartz on voluntary and involuntary manslaughter charges.

They said Swartz lost his cool when he became frustrated at rock-throwers from the Mexican side of the border while on the job.

The second trial, which began in October, ended with a not guilty verdict on the involuntary charge, but the jury again deadlocked on voluntary manslaughter.

Swartz was the rare agent who was prosecuted for use of force. The shooting, and his indictment three years later, came at a time when the Border Patrol was increasingly under scrutiny for its use of force, especially pertaining to rock-throwers, or people on the Mexican side of the border who throw rocks to distract agents.

Swartz's attorney said he was acting in self-defense and following Border Patrol policy when he fired at least 16 shots at Elena Rodriguez through the slats of a border fence dividing Nogales, Ariz., and Nogales, Sonora.

Prosecutors said Elena Rodriguez was throwing rocks at Swartz and other law enforcement officers who were on scene chasing a suspected drug smuggler in an effort to distract them.

The boy's family still denies that he was involved. They say his killing was not justified.

The announcement on Nov. 21 that the jury had found Swartz not guilty on involuntary manslaughter but had deadlocked on voluntary manslaughter was met with protests from activists who marched through downtown and shut down a busy intersection.

Christmas decorations stolen from Arizona family by brazen thief caught on camera

An Arizona family's holiday decorations became the target of an apparent Grinch after they were targeted on Saturday by a man posing as a jogger.

The Miranda family had an inflatable snow globe on the front yard of their Tempe home for a week before a thief got ahold of it.

"Usually when people steal Christmas decorations, it happens in the wee hours of the morning. But not this time — he was caught on camera," Rose Miranda told FOX10.

In surveillance video from outside the home, the man is seen dressed as a jogger and passing by the home before looping back. He then quickly grabs the deflated globe and runs off.

"It was a matter of seconds, less than 30 seconds," Mirada said.


The globe, which inflated to eight feet tall, held additional sentimental significance after coming from a family member who passed away a few years ago.

"It's sad because it's hard to explain to your kids," Miranda told FOX10.

The inflatable snow globe was stolen from the home on Saturday. (FOX10)

The Tempe resident wants others in her neighborhood to be on the lookout for the thief so they don't also become victims.

"I would hate for him to go around and do it to other people who are less fortunate and work really hard," she said.

Travis Fedschun is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @travfed

2 migrant children dropped over border wall by suspected smuggler, CPB video shows

Two small migrant children appeared to be dropped from the Mexico side of the border into the Arizona side by a suspected smuggler, according to surveillance footage provided by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on Monday.

The children were dropped from the 18-foot wall near the San Luis Port of Entry, according to CBP release. One child suffered a facial injury.

At least one person in Mexico was seen helping adult members of the family group over the top of the wall, and then dropping the children to the waiting family members below, according to the release. The six family members were from Guatemala, including three children ages 2, 7 and 10, the release said. The ages of the two children who were dropped were unclear. All six were taken into custody.

The suspect who helped the children over the border wall to the group did not cross into the U.S., CPB said, according to Yuma's KYMA-TV.

That section of the wall where the incident took place is part of the 27 miles that has been selected for replacement in 2019, the station reported, citing the CPB.

Amy Lieu is a news editor and reporter for Fox News.

MS-13 member from Mexico arrested in Arizona during immigration stop, CBP says

An MS-13 gang member was arrested Thursday in Arizona during an immigration stop by Border Patrol agents, officials said Monday.

Manuel Lopez-Gomez, 28, from Mexico, was taken into custody by agents from the Yuma sector of the border after he was stopped on Route 93 near Wikieup, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced in a news release.


Lopez-Gomez, identified as an illegal immigrant, was traveling with four others, three of whom were named by the federal agency.

Andres Abel Garcia, a 49-year-old Mexican national, was arrested during the incident. CBP said he was convicted of a DUI within 10 years of having a previous DUI. A 24-year-old Mexican national and her 27-year-old boyfriend, a U.S. citizen from Phoenix, were also arrested by border agents "for harboring certain aliens."

Those in the group who were identified as illegal immigrants told immigration officials they were traveling to Los Angeles, California with the goal of living and working there.

Nicole Darrah covers breaking and trending news for Follow her on Twitter @nicoledarrah.

Arizona homeowner shoots intoxicated man who entered wrong apartment: cops

An Arizona man was shot after mistakenly entering the wrong apartment while intoxicated early Sunday, The Arizona Republic reported, citing police officials.

The incident happened in Chandler, which is about a 30-minute drive southeast of Phoenix.

Local authorities responded to reports of a burglary in progress around 3:15 a.m., according to The Republic. Officials said the homeowner mistook the intruder for a burglar and shot him.

Investigators cited in the report described the burglar as an “extremely intoxicated” man who thought he was entering his own residence. Police said his injuries were not life-threatening. No arrests were made, the report said.

The identifies of the shooter or the wounded man were not released.

Bradford Betz is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @bradford_betz.

Suspect hides from police inches away from Arizona family at barber shop

A man wanted by police found out his hiding spot — inches away from members of a family — was not so secret after all.

Phoenix Police told FOX10 they were searching for Michael Farinas, a known gang member, after he ran from an officer on patrol and attempted to hide inside Laura's Salon and Barber shop.

In the surveillance video, Farinas can be seen walking into an office at the shop while two children are asleep on the couch before trying to hide himself under a cloth and table. An officer can be seen in the video walking by a window looking for Farinas.

"I felt unsafe, scared," Yanelly Guerque told FOX10. "I was asleep, and anything could have happened when that guy went in."

Barbershop owner Laura Rodriguez said that police alerted them that there was a suspect loose in the area, but they had no idea he was hiding just inches away from them.


Video from the barbershop shows Farinas lift the cloth off the table he was hiding under and tell the children and their father something.

In surveillance video, Michael Farinas can be seen walking into an office as two children were asleep on the couch before trying to hide himself under a cloth and table. (FOX10)

"He was like, 'shh,'" Guerque recalled. "He was, like, 'you guys better not say s___.'"

The family then ran from the room and alerted police outside.

Officers can then be seen arresting Farinas, throwing him to the floor after he ignored their commands.

One officer was kicked in the face as Farinas was being put into the back of a patrol car, police told FOX10.

Travis Fedschun is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @travfed

Man killed woman hours after his release from prison, authorities say

A man who police suspect of killing a woman hours after he was released from an Arizona prison was arrested Friday at a hotel, authorities said Saturday.

The suspect, identified as David Bohart, 34, had been released from the Tucson state prison complex Monday after serving a three-year stint for possession or use of dangerous drugs, according to the Arizona Department of Corrections website.

A warrant was issued for his arrest after he failed to check in to a court-ordered drug treatment facility.

On Wednesday, Tucson police found the body of Marika L. Jones, 49, with stab wounds at a home along with a file of prison records about Bohart, the Arizona Republic reported.

It was not immediately clear what connection Bohart had to Jones or what led to her death. He was booked into the Pima County jail on suspicion of second-degree murder, the report said.

In a statement, police said Jones’ body was discovered after a man who identified himself as an out-of-state attorney called to say someone had been killed in a home. While investigating at the location, detectives were told of a 911 call made Monday by an unidentified man who said he was just released from prison and killed his girlfriend.

Bohart served two previous terms in prison on convictions for forgery and possession or use of dangerous drugs, authorities said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

Video of Border Patrol agent’s gender-reveal explosion that sparked wildfire released

Video of a U.S. Border Patrol agent's gender-reveal party explosion that sparked Arizona's Sawmill Fire last year was released by the U.S. Forest Service on Monday.

The shot shows the words "BOY" and "GIRL" written across a target that's surrounded by tall grass. When the target is hit, a flash of blue powder briefly appears before an explosion takes over the area, lighting the Sawmill Fire.

Dennis Dickey, 37, of Tucson, pleaded guilty in September to igniting the fire, which burned more than 45,000 acres and caused more than $8 million worth of damage in April 2017.

Dickey shot a rifle at the target, which contained the highly explosive substance Tannerite, thus sparking the fast-moving blaze.


The then-off duty Border Patrol agent reported the fire immediately and admitted to being the cause of ignition.

As part of a plea agreement, Dickey agreed to five years of probation and to make a public service announcement about the cause of the Sawmill Fire with the Forest Service. He also agreed to pay more than $8 million in restitution.

Fox News’ Michelle Gant contributed to this report.

Nicole Darrah covers breaking and trending news for Follow her on Twitter @nicoledarrah.

Trump campaign reportedly owes Arizona airport $13G for lighting at Martha McSally rally

President Donald Trump’s campaign reportedly owes an Arizona airport $13,000 for lighting purchased for a rally he held with Martha McSally ahead of her unsuccessful Senate race.

Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport and the city of Mesa footed the bill for the temporary lighting installed in a parking area at the rally after the Trump campaign didn't pay, The Arizona Republic reported. Brian O’Neill, the airport’s executive director, said it arranged for the lighting out of safety and liability concerns.

The airport said it spent $13,000 for its share, and a Mesa spokesman told the newspaper the city was still calculating the cost it accrued from the visit. The airport wants the campaign to reimburse the cost.

The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News.

The rally for McSally was hosted at a private tenant’s hangar and not by the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport itself, The Arizona Republic reported.


McSally, a Republican congresswoman, conceded the close election to Democrat Kyrsten Sinema earlier this month. Trump stumped for McSally in October, calling her a “great veteran” and a “great fighter, a warrior.”

About 6,000 people attended the rally at the airport and another 6,000 were outside, The Arizona Republic reported.

Kaitlyn Schallhorn is a Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter: @K_Schallhorn.