Flagstaff History: Couple faced first-degree murder charges in death of son | Local


100 years ago

1922: “Do you know that Flagstaff should be one of the best winter resorts in the whole Southwest?” said Jimmy Swinnerton, famed for his cartoons of “Little Jimmy” as well as his Indian paintings in oils. “This may sound strange to the local resident who lives in Flagstaff all the time and is hunting for a lower altitude during the winter season. But think of the people all over the country, many of whom never see snow, as well as the thousands who visit Canada for winter carnivals of sports. There are hundreds of places around Flagstaff where ski jumps and slides could be built to beat anything in the whole West. There is never any bitter cold weather here, yet you have the winter snows and the hills, places where lakes for skating could be built at little cost. Why, Flagstaff could be made to great carnival center of the West, both winter and summer. The mystery to me is why Flagstaff with its wonderful surroundings has not been developed more than it has. You can’t beat it for a summer resting place, and it would be equally as good as a winter resort. It’s a rather a human trait to see greener pastures in the distance, but there is no other locality in the whole world where there are so many things the whole people of the world want to see and enjoy about Flagstaff.”

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Cecil Diaz’ ​​little factory behind the Brennan school in Flagstaff was closed last week, at least temporarily. Unless Diaz gets new equipment, he cannot resume business, with City Marshall RL Neill having confiscated his layout. And unless his new equipment is better than his old, someone who goes crazy drinking his hooch will stick a nice long knife into the middle of his back. This still is a tin wash boiler, top soldered on, a screw cap soldered into the top for pouring in the mash and an inverted tin funnel centered over another hole in the top. A rubber tube connecting the funnel with a long piece of copper tubing, which coiled out through a galvanized wash tub. Diaz paid police magistrate SB Gilliland $100, then skipped out. Two others said to be associated with him are being herded preliminary to branding.

75 years ago

1947: Plans for poisoning the trash fish in lower Lake Mary have been sped up and the poisoning will probably take place next Tuesday, members of the Flagstaff Game Protective Association were told Wednesday night at their regular meeting by Dud Yoder, director of fisheries for the state Game and Fish Commission. Flagstaff Mayor Sykes said that the city had requested the Commission to go through with its plans for removing the fish because the water level at the lake was getting so low that the presence of the fish was beginning to be considered a health hazard for the city water supplies. The plan of the Commission is to eliminate all fish from the lake and restock it with game fish, probably trout, as has already been done with upper Lake Mary and another lake. Through the years, several varieties of trash have grown to such an extent in the lake as to eliminate the more desirable game fish as the trash species use up more of the food. The Commission earlier this year took the fish out of the upper lake and restocked it with trout, keeping the lake closed to fishing while that route grew.

An opportunity of obtaining $60,000 of federal money for Flagstaff Municipal Airport will be lost unless voters approve the issuance of $40,000 in airport bonds at the city bond election called for Sept. 20. The airport bonds will be one of four issues presented to the electorate at that time for decision. The city will also ask the taxpayers to vote on a $35,000 sewer extension issue, a $15,000 city equipment housing issue, and a $100,000 issue for a pipeline between upper and lower Lake Mary. The Flagstaff mayor said that the federal government has already tentatively approved a grant of $60,000 for the proposed city airport near Fort Tuthill, but that the grant would be withdrawn unless the city could put up its $40,000 share. The $100,000 that would be provided by the city share and the federal government’s share would be used to build a 6,000-foot runway plus a small administration building at the field. The field would also be lighted.

50 years ago

1972: US Forest Service fire crews marched over land into a briskly burning fire on Harding point, northeast of Sedona, and succeeded in the face of a 40 mph wind at stopping the blaze at about 30 acres. About 70 men built flower lines around a fairly fast-moving blaze. The fire burned northward narrow road and two bulldozers that were brought in, Coconino National Forest fire dispatchers said today. The blaze was started about 12:30 pm Wednesday. Started by lightning the day before and fanned by brisk winds, the blaze sparks throughout 1/4 mile ahead of the main blaze, starting new and smaller fires. Three other fires were put down Wednesday by the firefighters, one on scenic Wing Mountain on the west edge of Fort Valley. A lightning caused fire also, firefighters had to climb uphill to reach the blaze atop the mountain, according to dispatchers. The men stopped the blaze at 15 to 20 acres. Full control of the fire was expected early today.

The Flagstaff Chamber of Commerce has voted to give sanction to a 10-year plan for timber management in the Coconino National Forest that calls for 65 million board feet a year to be harvested. This was a cut of 200,000 board feet a year for the lumber industry. Chamber sanction for the plan came because the lumbering industry is an important part of the Flagstaff Economic Community. The industry accounts for 3/4 of manufacturing employment in the city. The total payroll is $4.65 million a year. This represents 18% of the total employment in the city.

25 years ago

1997: The second Arizona governor in a decade has been ousted because of scandal. Fife Symington’s lip trembled, and his voice cracked. After years of saying he would beat whatever federal prosecutors threw at him, he had lost, he was to be thrown out as governor and he was almost certainly going to prison. Symington announced his resignation Wednesday rather than waiting for state law in the Arizona constitution to force him out as a convicted felon. As of 5 pm Friday, Symington will return to private life and await sentencing on federal counts alleging he committed fraud against lenders in his former career as a real estate developer.

A Flagstaff couple charged with murder in the death of their 3-year old son will be tried separately on dates that a judge set Wednesday. Judy Booty’s trial will begin Oct. 21 in Coconino Superior Court. The judge in the case, Charles Adams, said the trial is expected to last 5 1/2 weeks. Booty and her husband, Donald, are charged with first-degree murder, child abuse, and conspiracy to commit child abuse for the death of their son, Tyler, who died Oct. 11. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty. Donald Booty’s trial is tentatively scheduled to begin Jan. 6, but that date could change. Donald booty has denied ever striking the boy but told police he did not seek medical attention for Tyler’s low weight because he was afraid a doctor would see the bruises. In interviews with detectives, he blamed his wife for the boy’s death.

All events were taken from issues of the Arizona Daily Sun and its predecessors, the Coconino Weekly Sun and the Coconino Sun.

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