Doug Ducey Meets With Patriot Movement Activists, Not #RedForEd Leaders, & Other Top Stories

Nogales officer Jesus "Chuy" Cordova was murdered by a carjacker on Friday.
Nogales officer Jesus "Chuy" Cordova was murdered by a carjacker on Friday.
Last week was one of Arizona's most historic, with a massive, statewide teachers' strike starting on Thursday that paralyzed the state. This week promises to be even more disruptive as conservative state leaders work on Governor Ducey's questionable pay-raise plan or otherwise attempt to fight the teacher movement with insidious red-baiting or reasoned legal arguments.

But an avalanche of other local news came down in the last few days, too, so here's a quick rundown of some of the important stories you might have missed while focused on #RedForEd:

Nogales police officer killed by suspect

The small town of Nogales, Arizona, mourned the loss of Officer Jesus "Chuy" Cordova, 44, who died on Friday after being gunned down by a carjacking suspect.

He leaves behind a fiancee, who is pregnant, and three children. Governor Ducey ordered the flags in Arizona to be flown at half-staff in Cordova's honor.

Ducey appears in photo with Patriot Movement

Governor Ducey presumably didn't know he was posing for a photo with members of the Patriot Movement who may have been flashing white supremacist hand signs. But as activist Lydia Guzman pointed out, it's a fact that he met with these people rather than the leaders of #RedForEd.

click to enlarge U.S. Senator John McCain. - MIRIAM WASSER
U.S. Senator John McCain.
Miriam Wasser
John McCain

John McCain returned to the hospital on Sunday with an intestinal issue related to diverticulitis and told his son-in-law, Ben Domenech, to "take care of Meghan."

"John hugged me tonight. He asked me to take care of Meghan. I said I would... F-k you soulless crazies. F-k you all the way to hell," Domenech tweeted, various media sources reported.

Domenech later deleted the tweet, but speculation is still running rampant about whether McCain, suffering from terminal brain cancer, is near death.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich v. ABOR

State AG Mark Brnovich tried to sue the Arizona Board of Regents for the high tuition required by state universities, but Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Connie Contes dismissed the lawsuit, Capitol Media Services reported on Thursday.

Maybe now's the time to get that summer job you were thinking about.

Arizona scores a high ranking — for hit-and-runs

A new study by AAA puts Arizona at No. 5 in the nation for hit-and-run collisions in 2016. But the problem is hardly new. AAA reports that from 2006 to 2016, nearly 20 percent of those injured or killed by hit-and-run drivers were bicyclists and pedestrians.
Arizona white supremacists are really stupid

An apparent neo-Nazi hacked a road sign in Pinal County last week and put up a message for motorists about Adolf Hitler.

But for all the hacker's computer skills, he or she wasn't paying attention in junior high school: It's "Heil Hitler," morons, not "Hail Hitler."
Melissa Pavey and Jolene Houchens are accused of pretending to be dentists and working on at least five patients in Glendale. - ARIZONA AG'S OFFICE
Melissa Pavey and Jolene Houchens are accused of pretending to be dentists and working on at least five patients in Glendale.
Arizona AG's Office
Dental flaws

AG Brnovich announced that special agents from his office had arrested two metro Phoenix women who performed unlicensed dental work on five patients.

Melissa M. Pavey, 45, and Jolene E. Houchens, 38, who have never been licensed as dentists, performed procedures like "tooth extractions by utilizing drills, lasers, and surgical tools," Brnovich's office said.

Mike Pence Coming to ASU on Tuesday

Vice President Mike Pence will make a speech at Arizona State University on Tuesday in support of the Republicans' Congressional tax reform law. He'll be in town thanks to America First Policies, a nonprofit that formed last year to promote President Trump's policies.

Los Angeles Ends Punishment of Arizona

The Los Angeles City Council voted 10-0 last week to end the boycott of Arizona put in place after the passage of SB 1070, an anti-illegal-immigration bill perceived by liberals as racist, and by judges as flawed. The boycott had myriad exceptions, and its effect on Arizona's economy is unknown.

Dry, hot April ending on cooler note

The weather is on the side of Arizona teachers today, with cooler temperatures expected today than during last week's demonstration at the State Capitol. (It'll be in the high 80s, so sunscreen, hats, and water are still recommended for people planning to be outdoors.) Rain is predicted for Wednesday.
click to enlarge Tinder fire grows near Payson - SUNDANCE FIRE AND RESCUE
Tinder fire grows near Payson
Sundance Fire and Rescue
Tinder fire

The Arizona fire season has arrived, with the 8,000-acre Tinder fire consuming structures and vegetation near Payson, and continuing to grow. Arizona authorities predicted that this year is high-risk for wildfires given the poor winter rainfall totals.
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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.