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Here are the biggest Phoenix news stories from April 19-21

PHOENIX – From highway construction to street gang indictments and everything in between, here are the biggest Valley news stories from the past weekend.


Wrong-way driver arrested in Gilbert after fatal crash

A man was arrested Thursday in Gilbert for his role in a deadly wrong-way crash, authorities said.

Harrison Ward, 23, was booked into the Maricopa County Jail on both second-degree murder and aggravated DUI charges.


The closure of East Valley tops the list of highway restrictions for metro Phoenix this weekend

A complete shutdown in the East Valley tops the list of highway restrictions for metro Phoenix this weekend.

The southbound Loop 101 Price Freeway will be closed from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday for road surface improvement work from the Loop 202 Red Mountain Freeway to US 60 (Superstition Freeway) in Tempe.

The ramps from Thomas, McDowell and McKellips roads to the southbound Loop 101 will also be closed as part of the work, the Arizona Department of Transportation said.

Arizona street gang indicted for alleged involvement in pandemic fraud

Arizona Mexican Mafia members received a 50-count indictment after fraudulently applying for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance funds, Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes announced Friday.

Thirty members and associates were indicted by a state grand jury for their alleged participation in a criminal syndicate that filed fraudulent claims for pandemic unemployment assistance between 2020 and 2021.

The mafia members gave false information to receive money for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. In turn, they used these payments to finance and facilitate the actions of the Mexican Mafia in Arizona, officials said.


Domestic violence suspect located in Phoenix, arrested after leaving scene with child

A domestic violence suspect in Phoenix was arrested Thursday after he allegedly attacked his estranged wife and ran off with one of their children, authorities said.

Emmanuel Maldonado, 27, was booked into jail on multiple counts related to the domestic violence incident, including aggravated assault, burglary and prohibited possession of a weapon.

“Kidnapping charges regarding the child have not been filed due to custody concerns, but this aspect is also still under investigation,” said Sgt. Rob Scherer said this in a media advisory on Friday morning.


Valley’s ultimate foodie festival returns this weekend with fried chicken, donuts and more

Prepare for a mouthwatering adventure as the Valley’s ultimate globally inspired food festival returns to Peoria on Saturday.

The event at Centennial Plaza Park will bring together the second annual Arizona Fried Check and Wings Festival in addition to the Arizona Ice Cream Fest.

There will be a wide variety of unique dishes, with fried Oreos, bacon wrapped doughnuts, spicy ice cream and chicken and waffle ice cream sandwiches, offering something for everyone.

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