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Arizona in Brief: Fugitive in Vegas manicurist death found in Arizona

Police: Fugitive in Vegas manicurist death found in AZ

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A woman sought for almost two weeks by authorities in Las Vegas after allegedly skipping out on a $35 manicure and using a stolen car to run over and kill a salon worker who tried to stop her has been arrested in Arizona, police said Friday.

Krystal Whipple, 21, was taken into custody by a team of Phoenix-area fugitive hunters

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Krystal Whipple

involving police, county investigators and FBI agents, Las Vegas police said. The arrest occurred in the suburb of Glendale.

Las Vegas police Officer Jacinto Rivera said he did not immediately have details. He said prosecutors will seek Whipple’s extradition from Arizona to Las Vegas where she is wanted on a warrant issued Jan. 4 on murder and robbery charges in the killing of Ngoc Q. Nguyen, 51, of Garden Grove, California.

The case sparked intense national interest after police released an internet plea for help identifying Whipple and showing parking lot security video of a woman leaving the nail salon Dec. 29.

Homicide Lt. Ray Spencer said Whipple tried to pay for her manicure with a fraudulent credit card before telling Nguyen that she was going to her car to get cash, then drove away.

Nguyen went to the front of the car and a man who Spencer identified as Nguyen’s husband was seen in the security footage holding onto the vehicle from behind as the car accelerates out of a parking lot.

Police say the car was a rental that had been stolen. It was later found abandoned at an apartment complex.

Whipple has a criminal record in Las Vegas including a conviction in 2017 for attempted possession of a stolen vehicle. Clark County District Court records said she was sentenced to four months in jail for violating probation in that case.

An attorney who represented Whipple at that time said he doesn’t represent her now.

Cities concerned about funding for bus service amid shutdown

PHOENIX (AP) — Many cities and towns in Arizona are concerned about funding for public bus service as the federal government shutdown continues.

The Arizona Republic reports the shutdown has cut off cash that some cities and towns use to pay for bus transportation.

With the Federal Transit Administration not operating, cities like Cottonwood and Flagstaff have to pay the full cost of bus service that usually gets significant federal government funding.

Brittany Hoffman, the spokeswoman for Valley Metro, which serves the Phoenix metropolitan area, says there are no talks of curtailing service for the agency despite awaiting more than $7 million in reimbursements from the federal government.

Arizona Transit Association Executive Director Becky Miller says agencies around the state teleconferenced Wednesday to discuss contingency plans should the shutdown linger and services need to be cut.

Activists want Tucson to be Arizona’s 1st sanctuary city

TUCSON (AP) — Activists want to make Tucson the first sanctuary city in Arizona.

KGUN-TV in Tucson reports the advocacy group the People’s Defense Initiative is collecting signatures to place an initiative on the November ballot asking voters to approve a measure deeming Tucson a sanctuary city.

People’s Defense Initiative Director Zaira Livier says Tucson has a long valuable history in protecting its “undocumented neighbors.”

Under the proposal, police officers and city employees would be prohibited from detaining anyone based on immigration status.

The group has until July 5 to collect more than 9,000 valid signatures.

Phoenix police: Officers shoot armed robbery suspect

PHOENIX (AP) — Phoenix police say officers shot and wounded an armed man during an encounter when police stopped a vehicle following the armed robbery of an Avondale restaurant.

Sgt. Tommy Thompson says police had four people in the vehicle under surveillance in connection with several previous armed robberies before the one in Avondale.

According to Thompson, the suspect was in extremely condition and that he was shot after he got out of the vehicle, didn’t obey a command by police and pointed a weapon at police.

Thompson says no officers were injured. The three other people in the vehicle were described as a man, a woman and a juvenile.

The shooting occurred near North 91st Avenue and West Camelback Road.

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