Category: Cronkite News

Lack of interpreter gets man new sentencing in drug conviction

Danika Worthington Tuesday, March 1, 2016 Lack of interpreter gets man new sentencing in drug conviction WASHINGTON – A divided federal appeals court Tuesday ordered a new sentencing hearing in a drug case in which the presiding judge dismissed a Spanish-language interpreter after the defendant said he wanted to proceed in English. A majority of the three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said Adalberto Murguia-Rodriguez deserved another sentencing hearing because the judge in his case failed to follow proper procedure when dismissing the interpreter. In a dissent, Judge Consuelo Callahan said the majority’s opinion “punishes inarticulate district courts and rewards ‘gotcha’ tactics” by defendants. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for Arizona was not able to immediately respond to a request for comment on the case, but Murguia-Rodriguez’s attorney welcomed the decision Tuesday. “I think that the 9th Circuit correctly interpreted the Court Interpreters Act and I think they accurately enforced the procedures that Congress intended judges to follow in respect to interpreters in the courtroom,” said Daniel Kaplan, the assistant federal public defender who argued the case on appeal. Murguia-Rodriguez, a longtime legal permanent resident of the U.S., was stopped by Border Patrol agents Feb. 5, 2014, near Elfrida in a truck that was later found to have 130 pounds of marijuana and 45 rounds of .32-caliber ammunition. He was indicted on two counts – possession...

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Arizona’s top tree climbers compete for state championship

Ben Marigiott Tuesday, March 1, 2016 Arizona’s top tree climbers compete for state championship SUPERIOR — The state’s top tree climbers know that most people probably have a few misconceptions about their sport. “They’re going to think we’re weird or we’re tree huggers or something like that but no, we’re athletes,” Jon Bora, owner of All-American Arborists, said. Bora was one of several tree trimmers and arborists that made the trek to Boyce Thompson Arboretum in the Tonto National Forest Saturday for the Arizona Community Tree Council’s annual tree climbing championship . The contestants tested their skills in a number of different challenges in the morning that replicated what they would do in their day jobs as tree trimmers — without the chainsaws. “We’re not cutting or doing any harm to the trees,” Jesse Huffman, owner of Arborvision Tree Service, said. “It’s non-invasive tree climbing to mimic what we do on the job everyday.” .embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; } Three arborists advanced to the master’s challenge, the ultimate competition that combined elements from all the morning’s activities. Andy Young, who owns a tree service in Mesa called The Tree Amigos, dominated the competition, winning his second straight state title. He chalked it up...

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Super Tuesday: Early ballots pouring in from Maricopa County voters

Julia Thatcher Tuesday, March 1, 2016 Super Tuesday: Early ballots pouring in from Maricopa County voters While Arizona’s official presidential preference election day isn’t until the 22nd of March, that hasn’t stopped some people from getting in their early ballots. According to the Maricopa County recorders office, approximately 95,000 early voting ballots have already been submitted. Maricopa County Recorder Helen Purcell was surprised by that number. “More than what I thought it would be for this one,” Purcell said, “Because we still have so much going on across the country.” Specifically, 12 states are voting for who they want to be their party nominee in the presidential election this Super Tuesday. So how is today going to impact votes in Arizona? Polls haven’t closed, and predictions have already been made for some of the results. “We expect that trump is going to maintain momentum and we’ll see who is able to pick up a little bit of momentum,” said Richard Herrera, the Associate Director at Arizona State University’s School of Politics and Global Studies. “On the democratic party side, depending on how those states go, Hillary Clinton could lock up quite a bit of the required delegates she needs which makes it very, very difficult for Bernie Sanders to catch her,” said Herrera. He explained that he was surprised at the steady support Donald Trump has received from the...

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Cronkite News: March 1, 2016

Staff Tuesday, March 1, 2016 Cronkite News: March 1, 2016 This edition of Cronkite News focuses on Super Tuesday and why Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio have struggled to pick up the Latino vote..embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%;...

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Homeless shelter funds dwindling as summer heat looms

Amber Kahwaji Tuesday, March 1, 2016 Homeless shelter funds dwindling as summer heat looms A Maricopa County grant is keeping overnight shelter services available to the homeless, but the grant is expected to run out around June 30 as summer temperature burn hotter. County and Phoenix officials have no clear long-term funding solution for shelters used by hundreds every day. “We’re currently looking at models in different municipalities. How do other regions take care of their homeless problem?” said Clint Hickman, who chairs the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors. .embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; } The Maricopa County Industrial Development Authority granted $170,000 to Valley of the Sun United Way, an organization that funds non-profit community organizations. Valley of the Sun United Way is using the grant to fund St. Vincent de Paul and the Lodestar Day Resource Center, two facilities acting as temporary overnight shelters. Both centers provide meals, as well as mats with blankets for those who choose to spend the night. The grant is slated to fund the centers, located on the same campus, through June. City, county and community organizations are working to find money to keep shelters open to Phoenix area homeless once the grant money runs out. “It’s...

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