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May, 2022

  • 5 May

    Emergency action taken on Colorado River water, CRIT Chairwoman responds

    The Bureau of Reclamation announced two separate urgent drought response actions this week that aim to prop up Lake Powell by nearly 1 million acre-feet of water over the next 12 months. CRIT Chairwoman Amelia Flores responded to the news with support. Lake Powell’s water surface elevation is at 3,522 feet, its lowest level since originally being filled in the …

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  • 4 May

    Body of Brian Dunnan may have been found, submerged in river in his own vehicle

    The body of Brian Dunnan, accused of killing Johnny Beckham last June, may have been found, submerged in the Colorado River in his own missing vehicle. Beckham died by fatal gunshot wound on Wednesday, June 30th, 2021 at the age of 33, at his home on Dreamy Lane in the Lakeside 5 subdivision north of Parker. Dunnan, whose family vacation …

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  • 1 May

    Man arrested in Big River while riding stolen ATV

    A man was arrested in Big River while riding a stolen ATV. Charles Taylor, 44 of Big River, had an existing warrant for assault. On Thursday, April 28th, at approximately 4:05 p.m., deputies from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Colorado River Station conducted a traffic stop on an ATV at the intersection of Del Rey Drive and Papago Trail in …

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April, 2022

  • 13 April

    Five arrested for prostitution and drug house in Big River

    Five people were arrested for prostitution after deputies served a search warrant at a residence they called a “drug house” in Big River. On Tuesday at about 8 am, Roy Carter, 71 of Big River, Angela Bush, 48 of Parker, Donald “Tim” Hall, 65 of Parker, Anna Mandan, 37 of Parker and Terry Evans, 57 of Parker were arrested when …

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  • 12 April

    Hartless says Wedemeyer notice of claim “preposterous”

    Suspended Town Manager Lori Wedemeyer filed a notice of claim last month against the Town of Parker, Mayor Karen Bonds and Councilman Randy Hartless, the latter of which says he finds the claim “preposterous”. Last October, Wedemeyer was suspended by the Town Council after a search warrant was executed at her home in connection with an investigation by the Yuma …

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  • 12 April

    Why the Trump census count has already begun to negatively impact La Paz County

    According to the U.S. Census, roughly 20 percent of La Paz County’s residents disappeared from towns like Parker and Quartzsite between 2010 and 2020. The idea is “ludicrous”, County Supervisor Duce Minor responded last summer when the numbers were announced. But the Trump administration’s interference for political reasons makes the inaccuracy in the 2020 Census an even bigger issue than …

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  • 12 April

    Bureau of Reclamation to give presentation on river operations on the Parker Strip

    La Paz County District 2 Supervisor Duce Minor has announced he will be hosting a community meeting regarding U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s river operations. Bureau of Reclamation Deputy Chief Mike Bernardo and River Operations Manager Noe Santos from the Boulder Canyon Operations Office, Interior Region 8: Lower Colorado Basin will be sharing a presentation on the operations of their department …

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March, 2022

  • 18 March

    Wilkins pleads guilty in police chase that led to death of Sergeant Rudd

    Mark Joseph Wilkins has pled guilty to all the charges against him after he was accused of leading police officers on a chase that led to the death of La Paz County Sheriff’s Sergeant Mike Rudd last year. Late in the evening of October 11th, 2021, a report went out about an individual who had used a fraudulent credit card …

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February, 2022

  • 17 February

    BOAT ACCIDENT: Yucaipa man dies after attempt at life-saving measures

    A man died earlier this month after falling off his boat. By the time he was pulled to shore, he was unresponsive. Deputies from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Colorado River Station responded to a medical aid call at the 1400 block of Parker Dam on February 9th at around 2:08 pm. A male subject had fallen off his …

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  • 17 February

    CRIT Chairwoman and Vice Chairman meet with BLM Director over cultural resources

    CRIT Chairwoman Amelia Flores and Vice Chairman Dwight Lomayesva met with the Director of the federal Bureau of Land Management Tracy Stone-Manning to discuss the appropriate treatment of cultural resources located on public lands within the ancestral territories of tribal members. The informal meeting on February 8th was facilitated by CRIT’s consultant Sara A. Clark, a partner at Shute, Mihaly …

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  • 17 February

    Randy Hartless becomes college professor at 61

    Parker councilman Randy Hartless has begun teaching English at Arizona Western College at the age of 61, proving it’s never too late to pursue an education. After dropping out of Parker High School at the age of 15, it wasn’t until 30 years later that Hartless decided to buckle down and attain his first college degree. He soon discovered, however, …

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  • 9 February

    Yakima bonds are paid off leading to lower sales tax, but some businesses may still be charging the higher rate

    A decade-old sales tax hike has ended, but some businesses may still be charging the higher rate. The tax hike was used to pay a judgment against La Paz County in favor of Yakima Compost Company, with whom the County had a contractual dispute in the late 2000s. A jury awarded Yakima $9.2 million in damages, which then accrued penalties …

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January, 2022

  • 21 January

    Woman’s body found in rural La Paz County, boyfriend faces murder charges

    A 37-year-old woman from Phoenix was found dead yesterday in rural La Paz County, and her boyfriend faces charges for her murder. Irene Luevano was first reported missing on Sunday morning, having last been seen with her boyfriend Jorge Lara at the Silverado Canta bar in Phoenix the night before. They got there around 11 p.m. and were seen there …

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  • 11 January

    CRIT Chairwoman to address Arizona legislature

    The Chairwoman of the Colorado River Indian Tribes will address Arizona lawmakers and Tribal leaders at the 27th Annual Indian Nations and Tribes Legislative Day Wednesday at the Arizona State Capitol. Chairwoman Amelia Flores will deliver remarks during the Joint Protocol Session between 11am and noon at the Arizona House Chambers. The address comes weeks after US Senator Mark Kelly …

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November, 2021

  • 20 November

    Undefeated Parker Broncs football team at state semi-finals Saturday

    UPDATE: Morenci wins 39-14. —- The Parker Broncs football team, so far undefeated this season, are heading to the semi-finals where they will battle the Morenci Wildcats on Saturday. KLPZ Broncs commentator Brad Sale called the Morenci team “tough and disciplined” but said that if the Broncs could keep a key running back at bay, they could be in with …

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October, 2021

  • 20 October

    Town Manager Wedemeyer’s home raided by law enforcement, say reports

    UPDATE: The council voted unanimously to place Wedemeyer on paid administrative leave while any investigation is in progress. EARLIER: Parker Town Council is to hold a special meeting Friday at 10am to “consider the employment of the Town Manager.” The discussion may be held in executive session, behind closed doors, but any decisions will be made in public. —- ORIGINAL: …

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  • 13 October

    BlueWater Desert Challenge moves away from Parker to Cal City, other races will not be affected

    The BlueWater Desert Challenge, held annually by the Best In The Desert racing association each Fall in Parker, will be moving to Cal City for 2021. The other two races in the season in Parker will not be affected. Best In The Desert announced the change Wednesday after the Colorado River Indian Tribes said they would not allow the event …

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  • 13 October

    Arrests made for child endangerment in Big River

    A Big River couple were arrested Tuesday for endangerment and cruelty of a special needs child after an investigation by Child Protective Services. On Tuesday at around 4 p.m., deputies from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Colorado River Station conducted a Child Protective Services investigation at a residence in Big River. Upon arrival at the residence, deputies say they …

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  • 7 October

    County wins lawsuit filed by consultant, court criticizes former County Administrator

    La Paz County won summary judgment in a lawsuit filed against it by Kelly Sarber, a consultant who claims that the County agreed to pay her for services she provided for the development of a renewable energy project several years ago. Former County Administrator Dan Field intervened in the case on Sarber’s behalf, saying the County owes her the money, …

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September, 2021

  • 30 September

    Employee fired and escorted from Town Hall

    UPDATE: “I can neither confirm nor deny our Office’s involvement with any matters related to the Town of Parker.” – Arizona Auditor General’s Office by email Friday. —- An employee was fired and escorted from Town Hall last Friday, according to a press release by the Town. Jennifer Alcaida had been in an administrative role with the Town of Parker …

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  • 24 September

    Detectives investigating possible homicide in Salome

    Detectives are investigating a possible homicide in the town of Salome in eastern La Paz County. On Tuesday morning around 6:24 a.m. a La Paz County Sheriff’s Deputy responded to a call of a body discovered on Centennial Road in Salome around half a mile north of the community center there. A 66 year-old white male was found deceased at …

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  • 23 September

    Meet CRIT’s new Vice Chairman

    Dwight Lomayesva Jr. has been elected Vice Chairman of the Colorado River Indian Tribes. In a special election held Saturday after the resignation of Keith Moses in July, Lomayesva received by far the most votes out of the four candidates in the race. Lomayesva is a civil engineer and part-time farmer who taught at Cal State Fullerton, University of California …

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  • 23 September

    Supervisors meetings go online

    One of the persistent criticisms of the La Paz County Board of Supervisors over the years is that their public meetings are held on a weekday mid-morning when citizens tend to be at work or otherwise busy. This means that people don’t get a chance to attend meetings and see for themselves their local county government in action. Now, one …

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August, 2021

  • 11 August

    Sheriff says Beckham homicide case a daily priority

    The La Paz County Sheriff’s Department is working the Johnny Beckham homicide case daily, according to senior officials at the department. “Obviously people are yearning for information on this case,” said Sheriff William Ponce, speaking to Parker Live with Chief Deputy David Gray on Wednesday. “Unfortunately we can’t release everything that’s going on, because it’s an active investigation.” Gray said …

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July, 2021

  • 27 July

    Hollie Lucas appointed as new Court Clerk

    Governor Doug Ducey announced the appointment of Hollie Lucas as La Paz County Clerk of the Superior Court on Tuesday. The appointment fills the vacancy created by the resignation of Megan Spielman. Under Arizona law, the vacancy created by the resignation is filled by gubernatorial appointment until the next general election in 2022. “Hollie’s career shows her dedication to La …

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  • 20 July

    Man drowns near Havasu Landing, body recovered

    A man drowned on Lake Havasu Saturday amid windy conditions and rough water, according to San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department. On Saturday, deputies responded to a report of a drowning victim near the Havasu Landing Resort and Casino, which is directly opposite Lake Havasu City on the California side of the lake. It was discovered the victim, David Radine, 58 …

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  • 20 July

    CRIT Vice Chairman Keith Moses resigns, talks joys of progress

    The Vice Chairman of the Colorado River Indian Tribes, Keith Moses, has resigned. In an online video, he talked about the joys of seeing the progress CRIT has made over the past few years. Moses first took office in 2015 after many years in other local roles. During his time as Vice Chairman, the tribal council explored and implemented new …

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  • 14 July

    Judge Quickle reprimanded for treatment of colleagues

    La Paz County Superior Court Judge Jessica Quickle was reprimanded by the State of Arizona Commission on Judicial Conduct last month for her treatment of colleagues in the workplace. Judge Quickle is sworn in, January 2019 Complaints dating from September and October of last year, along with follow-up interviews with six court employees, alleged improper demeanor both on and off …

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  • 14 July

    Over 10,000 fully vaccinated in La Paz County

    Over 10,000 people have now been fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus in La Paz County. It is hard to estimate the precise rate of vaccination for the county, considering that many of the county’s doses were administered to part-time residents and temporary visitors. But we know that 8,423 people have received both doses of the vaccine within the county …

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  • 14 July

    UPDATED: Suspect in the murder of Johnny Beckham still not located

    UPDATE, July 21st: The death of Johnny Beckham has been designated a homicide. A warrant has now been issued for Brian Dunnan’s arrest. Original story below. — A person of interest in the June 29th death of Johnny Beckham, identified several days ago as Brian Douglas Dunann, has not yet been located. What we know from official sources Dunann is …

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  • 12 July

    Conflict at Town Hall continues over Town Manager

    Conflict continues to swirl around the actions of Parker Town Manager Lori Wedemeyer, with some in the council supporting her and others wanting her out. A dustup involving a recent employee resignation and, now, Wedemeyer’s contract, continue to divide the council. Parker Town Hall is a peaceful place most of the time. As you would expect in a small town …

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  • 12 July

    Viewfinder: Wildfire scorches several acres on Parker Strip, fireworks suspected

    A wildfire scorched several acres of riverfront land on Parker Strip opposite Fox’s and Sundance resorts over the weekend. Buckskin Fire Department and San Bernardino Fire responded with both land-based fire engines and a fire boat. Buckskin was called just before 1 a.m. early on Sunday morning. Less than 10 acres of desert brush, mesquite and salt cedar trees were …

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  • 6 July

    Local man dies of fatal gunshot, Sheriff’s Department investigating

    UPDATE: A suspect has been identified as Brian Douglas Dunann, who is wanted for questioning but is still not located. More info HERE. — A local man died last week of a fatal gunshot in the Upriver area north of Parker, AZ. La Paz County Sheriff William Ponce says the Department is investigating. The matter is currently assigned to the …

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  • 6 July

    Man in critical condition after boating incident near Needles, alcohol involved

    A man is in critical condition after a boating incident over the holiday weekend involving alcohol. He was later arrested for operating a boat under the influence. On Saturday, July 3rd at approximately 5:51 p.m., deputies with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Colorado River Station Marine Enforcement Unit responded to a report of a boating collision on the Colorado …

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  • 1 July

    Mike Burke retired as Judge 10 years ago, reflects on his career

    Although it seems like only yesterday, Michael Burke retired as the La Paz County Superior Court Judge almost ten years ago. Parker Live sat down with Burke, a pioneer in the La Paz County legal system, to find out how he is doing in retirement and reflect upon his time as judge. Burke grew up in California and ultimately became …

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June, 2021

  • 25 June

    Planet Ranch Fire burning in Bill Williams Refuge

    A wildfire in the area of the Bill Williams National Wildlife Refuge, the Planet Ranch Fire, is continuing to burn, according to Buckskin Fire District. The fuels that are burning are Salt Cedars, Mesquites, Cottonwoods and brush. According to the District, these types of fuels will produce light ashes but not large embers, which means that the closest communities, in …

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  • 11 June

    Man dead after his jetski exploded, throwing him into the river

    A Moreno Valley man is dead after his jetski exploded, throwing him into the river. He died in hospital after being transported from the scene. On Friday afternoon at 12:39 p.m., deputies from the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department responded to a call for a boating incident at River Shore Estates in Earp. On arrival, medical staff from the Buckskin Fire …

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  • 1 June

    Viewfinder: Boat sinks at Fox’s

    In photos: A boat sank at Fox’s bar on the Parker Strip on Saturday. A group of around 30 people tried to use ropes to pull the boat toward the shore, tug-of-war style, but the boat didn’t move much. No word on what happened later (perhaps some of our readers know?). Memorial Day weekend, 2021.

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  • 1 June

    Man saved from drowning on Lake Havasu

    A man’s life was saved after he nearly drowned on Lake Havasu Saturday. Deputies from the San Bernardino County Sheriff Colorado River Station Marine Enforcement Unit were flagged down by subjects on a boat, on Lake Havasu near Havasu Landing Casino. Deputies were told a male victim fell off his personal watercraft and was drowning in the water. Some good …

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May, 2021

  • 20 May

    Tom Simmons retires after 38 years at La Paz County, longest-serving employee

    On February 11th, 2021, the longest serving employee in La Paz County history retired. Tom Simmons, who began his career when the county was first formed in 1983, ended a remarkable 38 years working in the County Public Works Department. When Tom started his career with the county, Ronald Reagan was the President, gas was 96 cents a gallon, the …

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April, 2021

  • 20 April

    La Paz County’s General Fund is $3.4m underwater

    La Paz County’s General Fund is $3.4 million in the red, according to a new report by financial consultants, and is poised to get even worse. A presentation by outside accountants Jay Parke and Karen Ziegler paints a grim picture: a negative balance in the General Fund, “virtually no unrestricted cash”, “insolvent” accounts, and banks walking away from the County. …

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  • 17 April

    Boat accident near Emerald Cove leaves operator in intensive care

    On April 16, 2021 at approximately 10:23 pm, the San Bernardino County Sheriff Department’s Boat Accident Investigation Team was dispatched to a major injury boat collision that occurred on the California shoreline at Bass Point on the Parker Strip. Through investigation and interviews, it was determined Mark Thene was operating a 19-foot SeaRay southbound on the Colorado River at a …

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  • 16 April

    Darla Tilley OUT at Senior Center after dust-up at Town Hall

    Darla Tilley is no longer running the Parker Senior Center after a dust-up at Town Hall led to her resignation “under duress.” Town Manager Lori Wedemeyer says there were valid complaints against Tilley, but Councilman Randy Hartless says Tilley was doing “an incredible job” and thinks it’s Wedemeyer who should be fired. Tilley’s last day at the Senior Center, which …

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March, 2021

  • 30 March

    Fatal boating collision north of I-40 being investigated

    A fatal boating collision on Monday is now being investigated north of the I-40 bridge over the Colorado River near Topock. A juvenile male operator of a personal watercraft is okay, but his 45-year-old male passenger died at the scene. On Monday, March 29th at approximately 3:37 pm, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s Colorado River Station Marine Enforcement Unit …

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  • 22 March

    Rare-earth minerals mining project moves forward

    A company called Western Rare Earths, based in Phoenix, is moving forward with plans to drill into the ground for a set of 17 minerals on public lands near Bouse, Arizona in rural La Paz County. The prize: 17 elements known as ‘rare-earth elements’, which include 15 lanthanides plus scandium and yttrium. These elements are necessary components of more than …

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  • 12 March

    CRIT eases restrictions as COVID numbers decrease

    Thanks to a decline in new COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, the CRIT Tribal Council voted Friday to reinstate its ‘Safer At Home’ resolution, which eases some restrictions resulting from the pandemic. The more restrictive ‘Stay At Home’ resolution has been in place since late December. Over the past 14 days there have been only 8 newly reported coronavirus cases on …

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  • 12 March

    COLUMN: Pastor Louie gets the vaccine

    Yes, I got the shot. Yesterday as a matter of fact. I want to talk a bit about this in the faint hope that it might help those of you who are still on the fence to think things through about whether or not to get the shot. Please note this is not an article telling you to either get …

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  • 10 March

    Mohave Road bridge project won’t close the road completely, detours for larger vehicles

    The Mohave Road bridge project now underway by the CRIT Planning Department will not close the route completely, but there will be detours for larger vehicles and a 12-foot restriction. As the main road through the Colorado River Indian Tribes reservation, Mohave Road (also known as CRIR 1) is a major thoroughfare linking the town of Parker and I-10. In …

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  • 10 March

    Accounting error leads to delayed tax filings for County employees

    Employees of La Paz County have had to delay filing their taxes due to an accounting error, which has now been fixed for most employees. According to District 2 Supervisor Duce Minor, the error was made in the process of issuing employees’ initial W2 forms from the County, leading to a review and a process of correction which took around …

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  • 1 March

    Nomadland features Quartzsite, real people

    It’s the best drama film of the year, according to the Golden Globes, and it was made right on our doorstep. Nomadland features real people in Quartzsite, Arizona among other places, including one last, brief on-screen stint for Quartzsite’s Paul Winer. Nomadland – directed, written and edited by Chloé Zhao – is the story of a woman who sets off …

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