Bike down in roundabout

CLARKDALE - A Clarkdale officer was called when a motorcycle went down on Saturday evening at the State Route 89A entrance to Centerville.

A 49-year-old man lost control of the motorcycle and laid it down in the intersection. He suffered lower leg and ankle injuries and dislocation and was transported to Verde Valley Medical Center.

Saved by the smoke alarm

COTTONWOOD - Early Monday morning, Verde Valley Fire District crews were dispatched to the scene of a residential attic fire in the 2300 block of South Lariat Circle.

Interior crews discovered the active attic fire around the chimney portion of a wood stove, in an area that also contained electrical wiring. Fire was restricted to the attic of the residence. Crews extinguished the blaze, and checked for extensions.

One of three occupants of the home had awakened to the sound of his smoke alarm, and went to investigate. He discovered there was no power in the room with the wood stove, and went to a utility room that he found filled with smoke. There was no fire in the wood stove, just smoldering ashes, but he also noticed smoke coming from attic vents and called 911.

The three occupants renting the residence, along with their dog, evacuated the home. The trauma Intervention Program (TIP) was called to assist the displaced occupants.

Damage to the residence involved damage to the ceiling including a ceiling joist that had burned through, and substantial smoke damage.

Car Fire at Food City

COTTONWOOD - The Cottonwood Fire Department was dispatched Saturday morning to a report that a car was burning in the Food City parking lot.

A store employee had already suppressed the fire when crews arrived. The fire officials found the car had a fuel leak.

Felony DUIs in Cottonwood

COTTONWOOD - Two men were charged with three counts each of felony DUI within hours this weekend, one driving a Toyota sedan and the second on a motorcycle.

Both men had a blood alcohol content more than double the legal limit.

Early Sunday morning, a patrol officer was following the white Toyota on State Route 260 when it nearly drove into a guardrail and then nearly collided with the curb at Rodeo Drive near Wal-Mart. According to the report, the car continued to weave in its lane before it was pulled over by the officer.

The driver, 35-year-old Jeremy Paul Crosby, smelled of alcohol and his eyes were bloodshot, the officer reported.

Crosby produced a Colorado identification card, but had a suspended license in Arizona and no license at all in Colorado.

Crosby, who allegedly failed a sobriety test, admitted that he might also have a warrant in Colorado. He did, but the warrant was not extraditable in Arizona.

Since the Toyota was the only family vehicle and his wife had three children, the vehicle keys were dropped off with her on the way to booking.

Several hours earlier, a motorcycle officer stopped a motorcycle after observing it moving erratically through Cottonwood.

The bike finally came to a stop, but the officer was forced to put down the kickstand for 30-year-old Joseph Hernandez. He carried no identification, according to the report.

When grilled by the officer, Hernandez became very emotional, saying his ex-girlfriend had just died and that he just wanted to get home and was not in front of his house. He had stopped on Cavalry Circle, but lived on Hammer Circle.

Correction to 3-car collision report

CAMP VERDE - The Camp Verde Marshal's Office has released a correction to show that one driver was cited for a three-vehicle accident, but not the driver originally reported as at fault.

The report showed that a three-vehicle Camp Verde collision occurred Nov. 26 on State Route 260 at General Crook Trail. The investigation found the driver of a Honda Accord, 52-year old Mary McDowall, was stopped at the stop sign on General Crook Trail and SR 260. McDowall turned right onto SR 260 in front of an oncoming Hyundai Elantra driven by a 17-year-old girl. The Hyundai then veered off to the left across both east bound traffic lanes of SR 260 and collided with the semi trailer a Freightliner tractor trailer rig driven by 53-year-old Enrique Gonzales.

The truck was in the left turn lane for General Crook Trail when the Hyundai collided with it. McDowall was issued a citation for failure to yield from a stop sign.

The 17-year-old was transported to the hospital for her injuries.

It was originally reported by CVMO that the girl had been cited, but only McDowall received a citation.

Be wary of scams when making holiday donations

PHOENIX - While the holiday season is typically a time for giving, it is seen less charitably by criminals engaged in consumer scams. Here are few helpful tips from the Arizona Attorney General's Office to avoid becoming a victim to charity and fundraising fraud:

(1) Never give on impulse or give into high-pressure requests for contributions or donations. Always review all written information before making a donation. If a solicitor refuses to provide written information, refuse to donate. Don't be afraid to ask if the person is a volunteer or a paid fundraiser.

(2) Make sure you know how your donation will be distributed and know how much of your donation will actually go to the charity itself (versus administrative costs). Legitimate charities will not pressure you for an immediate donation and are happy to provide information about their charity for you to review.

(3) Avoid giving cash and always make your check payable to the charity, never an individual. Be sure you know the name, address and telephone number of the charity. Be wary of names closely associated with the name of a well-known charity, using familiar words such as United, American or National.

(4) Never give out personal information, such as your birth date, Social Security number, credit card number, checking account number or any financial information, to a solicitor either by telephone, mail or at your door.

(5) Never give a donation to a charity that (a) offers to take your donation directly from your account, such as an automatic debit; (b) encourages you to send a donation by courier/overnight express mail; or (c) asks you to wire your donation. Donate directly to the organization either in person (at an event sponsored by the charity) or through the U.S. Postal Service.

(6) When donating items through charitable bins, commonly located in parking lots, read the disclosure stickers posted on the bins to determine the for-profit and non-profit bins. Non-profit companies will provide a majority of their proceeds to charities. For-profit companies often sell their donated items overseas and send a small percentage of their proceeds to charities. If you are in doubt, check online for charities you have not heard about or donate to local charities or thrift stores that are familiar to you.

(7) Know the difference between "tax deductible" and "tax exempt." Tax deductible means you can deduct your donation on your federal income tax return. Tax exempt means the charity does not have to pay taxes. Even if a charity is tax exempt, your donation may not be tax deductible. If you would like a tax deduction, ask the charity for a receipt stating that your donation is tax deductible. For more information, see www.give.org/tips/tax.asp and http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/alerts/alt027.shtm or call 877.382.4357 for a brochure.

For more information about giving to charities and fundraisers, contact the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov/charityfraud or (877) 382-4357.

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