Yuma County News


The Yuma County Sheriff’s Office (YCSO) and the Yuma County Recorder’s Office (YCRO) are working together to actively examine cases of voting fraud from the 2020 General Election and now a recent pattern of fraudulent voter registration forms leading up to the 2022 Primary Election.


As of March 2022, YCSO has 16 voting/registration open cases. All relevant evidence is being formally documented by the Yuma County Recorder’s Office and further investigated by the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office.


Some examples of voter fraud Yuma County is currently seeing are the following:

·         Impersonation fraud: Voting in the name of other legitimate voters and voters who have died or moved away.

·         False registrations: Falsifying voter registrations by either using a real or fake name, birth date, or address. This is being done by outreach groups who are paid for each registration form they submit, therefore, are out soliciting voters into unnecessarily re-registering or falsifying forms with Yuma County resident’s identities.

·         Duplicate voting: Submitting multiple votes or registering in multiple locations and voting in the same election in more than one jurisdiction or state.

·         Fraudulent use of absentee ballots: Requesting absentee ballots and voting without the knowledge of the actual voter; or obtaining the absentee ballot from a voter and either filling it in directly and forging the voter’s signature or illegally telling the voter who to vote for.

If you suspect or witness individuals committing any of the mentioned voting frauds, share their name or any other identifying information to law enforcement immediately.    

The majority of voter fraud cases in Yuma County are related to duplicate voting (typically charged as illegal voting and false voter registration). Under Arizona law, illegal voting is a class 5 or class 6 felony. A person found guilty faces up to 2 or 2.5 years in prison, fines, restitution, loss of voting rights, and/or probation.


YCSO and YCRO advise all Yuma County residents to go directly to the Yuma County Recorder’s Office or Arizona Secretary of State’s Office to register to vote, check their voter registration status and/or update their voter registration in advance of the voter registration deadline of Tuesday, July 5, 2022.


Do not fill out voter registration forms in the community unless it is a County employee as these are being mined for personal information and often take over a month to be submitted to the County Recorder’s Office for processing.


If Yuma County voters find any incorrect information in their current voter registration record, please notify the County Recorder’s Office immediately at (928) 373-6034 or voterservices@yumacountyaz.gov.


Anyone with information regarding voter fraudulent schemes or believe they have been a victim of a fraudulent vote, please contact the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office at 928-783-4427 or 78-CRIME to remain anonymous. You can also visit our website at www.yumacountysheriff.org to submit an anonymous tip.


Information Released By:  Tania Pavlak, Public Affairs Specialist    



A popular Yuma County Library District service has been recognized with a 2022 Best in Category Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo). The awards honor innovative, effective county government programs that strengthen services for residents.

NACo recognized “Smart Start Kits” under the category of Libraries.

The Main Library began developing the Smart Start Kit program to offer children and their caregivers’ early literacy through take-home interactive kits. This program was designed to help the Library better serve its youth population by exposing children to high-quality early learning. The Library provided a variety of kits with different themes that included books and teaching materials for their caretakers to use community resources. Through participation in this program, the children would have access to high-quality learning experiences rich in language and literacy that would help reduce learning gaps and ensure that children are ready to start reading when they enter kindergarten. Because families are a child's first teachers, it is vital to strengthen their role by providing the necessary tools to succeed academically.

The Smart Start Kits program was launched in October 2019, and the kits were available for any patron to borrow. The kits contained carefully selected children's books, music, toys, and puzzles that caregivers could use to help profoundly influence literacy and language development, the foundations for all other learning. The varied themes included animals, counting, alphabet, special needs, space, nursery rhymes, transportation, bilingualism, and beginner's science.

Nationally, awards are given in 18 different categories that reflect the vast, comprehensive services counties provide. The categories include children and youth, criminal justice, county administration, information technology, health, civic engagement and many more.

Started in 1970, NACo’s annual Achievement Awards program is designed to recognize county government innovations. Each nominee is judged on its own merits and not against other applications received.



On Tuesday, May 10, 2022 at approximately 1:07 p.m., Yuma Police Department officers responded to the 900 block of S. 5th Avenue in reference to a burglary call.


Upon arrival officers were confronted by a 34 year old male subject who was armed.  The subject did not comply with officers commands to drop the weapon and lethal force was used.  The subject was pronounced deceased on scene.


This is still an ongoing investigation.  The south bound traffic will be restricted on 5th Avenue between 9th Street and 10th Street for several hours for this investigation.


The Yuma Police Department encourages anyone with any information about this case to please call the Yuma Police Department at (928) 373-4700 or 78-Crime at (928) 782-7463 to remain anonymous.


Information Released By:  Sergeant Lori Franklin




Yuma Union High School District Career & Technical Education students from multiple Career & Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs) advanced to their national competition following top finishes at their respective state conferences.


Overall, 35 individuals across all five comprehensive schools in YUHSD will travel to nationals to compete in 23 events.


“It’s amazing,” YUHSD Superintendent Gina Thompson said. “Our CTE programs have so much to be proud of, from their leadership development to their ability to bring so many state and national awards back home to Yuma County. When we talk about college, career, and community ready, these students are the prime example. Employers, you have the future of your companies going to school right here in your backyard.”


After two years of virtual competitions, or in some cases no events at all, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students competed in events in person for the first time since 2019. This spring, YUHSD sent 521 students to state-level competitions across six CTSOs. Future Farmers of America (FFA) holds their state conference later this summer, so there’s a strong possibility even more YUHSD students will advance to nationals.


"Going to Nationals was something I never thought I would be able to do, but now it's my second time going,” said San Luis High School senior Johana Cocio Gutierrez, who will travel to Educators Rising Nationals in Washington, DC. “Being a part of Educators Rising has been a learning experience, and I will take a lot from it.  Being part of Ed Rising and being able to compete, show my knowledge, and represent San Luis High School, has been one of the best things that has happened to me.”


Here are the students from each CTSO who advanced to nationals and the site of the national conference in parenthesis:


Educators Rising (Washington, DC)

·       Dominick Camacho (two events), Cibola, Exploring Administration Careers AND Impromptu Lesson

·       Valeria Vizcarra and Galilea Torres, Gila Ridge, Children’s Literature (Pre-K)

·       Natalie Rosso, Destinee Bailey and Axiry Soto, Gila Ridge, ECE: Display of Theme Development

·       Ahime Montanez, Iredi Cebreros-Corral, Emily Garcia and Faith Gaona, Kofa, Ethical Dilemma

·       Max Schwitzing, Kofa, Impromptu Speaking

·       Johana Cocio Gutierrez, San Luis, Job Interview


FBLA (Chicago, IL)

·       Kassia Beard, Kofa, Introduction to Event Planning

·       Diana Rodriguez, San Luis, Intro to Parliamentary


FCCLA (San Diego, CA)

·       Jesus Torres, Cibola, Leadership

·       Deijah Esquivel, Cibola, Culinary Math Management

·       Rudy Garcia, Yuma High, Culinary Arts


HOSA (Nashville, TN)

·       Alberto Bolanos, Cibola, Pathophysiology


SkillsUSA (Atlanta, GA)

·       Asya Guillen, Cibola, Criminal Justice

·       Catherine Yanez, Nathalie Corral Gonzalez and Arely Madrigal, Cibola, CSI

·       Madelina Macaluso, Gila Ridge, Welding Sculpture

·       Patrick Smith, Luis Jauregui and John McMahen, Gila Ridge, Career Pathway Showcase

·       Samantha Dahin, Kofa, Prepared Speech

·       Cassandra Dahin, Kofa, Extemporaneous Speech

·       Geminis Gonzalez, Kofa, Customer Service

·       Alberto Barraza, Kofa, Building Maintenance

·       Peter Sanchez and Carlo Melendres, San Luis, Robotic Search and Rescue

·       Angel Bogarin Perez, Manuel Bogarin Perez and Julio Cabrera Ledesma, Yuma High, Chapter Display


ABOUT JENNIFER: Jennifer Blackwell hails from Safford, AZ!  In 1993, Jennifer relocated to Yuma to be with her husband, Jeff (a native Yuman!) The two have been married since 1994 and they have a son, Jace, who is a college student.