Fleas In Two Arizona Counties Tested Positive for Plague

Bubonic plague.

Fleas in two Arizona counties are carrying bubonic plague, an infectious disease that took the lives of millions of people in the Middle Ages, according to news reports. So far there have been no reported illness and deaths.

Health officials in Navajo and Coconino counties in Arizona recently issued a warning to the general public after fleas in the northern part of the state tested positive for Yersinia pestis, the bacteria that causes the bubonic plague. Humans can contract the plague in a number of ways. In addition to flea bites, people can pick up the bacteria by handling the fluids or tissue of a rodent or another animal that has the illness. The plague can also be transmitted through bodily fluids such as respiratory droplets.

“Navajo County Health Department is urging the public to take precautions to reduce their risk of exposure to this serious disease, which can be present in fleas, rodents, rabbits and predators that feed upon these animals,” the public health warning states, ABC news reported. “The disease can be transmitted to humans and other animals by the bite of an infected flea or by direct contact with an infected animal.”  NewsWeek

Plague cases only occur out west.

Most human cases in the United States occur in two regions:

Northern New Mexico, northern Arizona, and southern Colorado, California, southern Oregon, and far western Nevada.  CDC

Map source CDC

Plague cases in the United States, 1970–2012. Since the mid–20th century, plague in the United States has typically occurred in the rural West. The case shown in Illinois was lab-associated.  CDC

Police Chief: ‘Our Phoenix Police Officers Were Targeted’

Marc LaQuon Payne
Marc LaQuon Payne

Update:  Marc LaQuon Payne (44) was arrested and faces three counts of attempted first-degree murder after trying to run over three Phoenix police officers. 12News

3 Phoenix police officers are fortunate to be alive.

It was the first day on the job for the police officer that is flipped head over heels and lands on the car’s hood.

A man accused of striking three police officers with his vehicle at a Phoenix QuikTrip early Tuesday has been identified as 44-year-old Marc LaQuon Payne.

An angry Phoenix Police Chief Joe Yahner played a video showing a vehicle pulling out of a parking space, circling the parking lot and then accelerating toward the police officers outside the convenience store.

In an early-afternoon press conference, Yahner said two officers were seriously injured and the driver will be booked on three charges of attempted first-degree murder.

“I’m very proud of the men and women of the Phoenix Police Department, and I’m outraged by this incident,” Yahner said.

“Our Phoenix police officers were targeted.”

A 33-year-old police officer who was on his first day of duty suffered a head injury, and a police sergeant, 41, suffered a broken leg. A third officer, 36, managed to jump out of the way but was injured during an extended struggle with the driver, Yahner said.

The video shows the rookie officer thrown several feet in the air and hitting the glass window of the QuikTrip. The officer, whom Yahner would identify only by his first name, Jeremy, then helped take Payne into custody, Yahner said.

The sergeant, who had fallen to the pavement, called for assistance, Yahner said. AZCentral

Arizona Artists File Lawsuit Over Phoenix LGBT Law

brushnibTwo Phoenix artist who specialize in designing wedding-related artwork filed a preemptive lawsuit against the city’s anti-discrimination statutes — which covers LGBT residents.

The government must allow artists the freedom to make personal decisions about what art they will create and what art they won’t create. Just because an artist creates expression that communicates one viewpoint doesn’t mean she is required to express all viewpoints. It’s unjust, unnecessary, and unlawful to force an artist to create against her will and intimidate her into silence.
-Jeremy Tedesco, senior counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom

A lawsuit filed in Arizona claims a city ordinance forces local artists to use their talents to promote same-sex weddings and does not allow them to express freely their belief that marriage is between one man and one woman.

Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative, Christian legal organization, filed a pre-enforcement challenge to Phoenix’s city code May 12 for Breanna Koski and Joanna Duka, owners of Brush & Nib Studio based in Phoenix, Ariz.

Koski and Duka, who want to honor God through their art and business, specialize in hand painting, hand lettering, and calligraphy for events, like weddings.

Phoenix law “strips artists of their freedom to choose what to create and what to say in the marriage context,” the complaint against the city says. If Koski and Duke were to turn down creating art to celebrate a same-sex marriage, the city could fine them up to $2,500 for each day they violate the law and make them spend six months in jail, since their studio creates art for opposite-sex wedding ceremonies, according to the complaint. Daily Signal

Illegal Immigrant Deported 6 Times Charged in Felony Hit-and-Run That Injured 2 Young Children

ManuelPerez-Vasquez
Manuel Perez-Vasques deported 6 times since 2012.

A six-time-deported illegal immigrant has been charged with a felony hit-and-run of an Arizona mother and her two young children on July 4th.   Manuel Perez-Vasques, 29, admitted being high while driving an SUV and allegedly swerving onto the other side of the road crashing into the car.  The 5-year-old reportedly suffered “a significant laceration to the head” and was transported to the hospital by air ambulance, the injured 2-year-old girl was transported by ambulance.

Detectives from the PCSO Vehicular Crimes Unit determined Perez-Vasquez traveled left of center, causing the collision. Perez-Vasquez allegedly showed signs of drug impairment and was placed under arrest on suspicion of driving while impaired by drugs and leaving the scene of an injury collision, a felony. He allegedly confessed to smoking marijuana before the collision.

“He refused to give a blood sample when arrested because he knew he had drugs in his system,” Babeu said. “Detectives had to get a search warrant from a judge to obtain the blood sample.”

Perez-Vasques fled the scene but later returned.

According to the report, Perez-Vasquez refused to tell deputies where he lived and said he didn’t know the name of the person that owned the vehicle he was driving, nor did he know the name of the person that was in the vehicle with him. Maricopa