Phoenix police have confirmed that Arizona state Senator Tony Navarrete has been arrested on allegations of
having sexual conduct with a child.
Tony Navarrete, a Democrat that serves Arizona’s 30th District, which covers parts of west Phoenix and Glendale, was arrested on Thursday.
Investigators said the crimes occurred in 2019 but wouldn’t release any other details. Navarrete faces multiple counts of sexual conduct with a minor, among other charges, police said.
The alleged incident involving sexual conduct with a minor happened in 2019.
According to court documents, a 16-year-old boy said he previously lived with Navarette and says he woke up to Navarette touching him inappropriately. Navarette then performed sex acts on him. This allegedly occurred more than five times and began when he was 12 to 13-years-old and lasted until the victim was 15.
The teen says he saw Navarette’s hand underneath his pants on multiple occasions, and he allegedly told the victim, “Oh I shouldn’t be doing this, this is wrong.”
The teen now says he now suffers from anxiety and anger issues that stem from the sexual abuse.
There is an additional witness in the situation. The victim’s 13-year-old brother says Navarette also touched his upper leg before he hit him away. During the incident, the boy said he felt frozen and unsure of what to do.
Allegedly, on Thursday, a one-party consent call was conducted between the victim and Navarette. During the call, Navarette told the teen he regrets any “bad actions” and that he “wasn’t well” during the time of the incidents.
Senate Democrats confirmed one of their senators was taken into custody and released a statement Thursday saying, “We are aware one of our members has been arrested and are awaiting further details and for law enforcement to do its job. We will not have further comment at this time.”
Navarrete now faces multiple counts of sexual conduct with a minor, one count of molestation of a child and one count of attempted sexual conduct with a minor. In his initial court appearance Friday, bond was set for $50,000.
If convicted on all counts, he faces a minimum sentence of 49 years.
“He should have no contact with minors. Absolutely – whether in his family, out of his family, strangers,” said the prosecutor at Navarrete’s initial apperance.
In 2016, Navarrete was first elected to the state House of Representatives and represented District 30. Two years later, voters elected him to the state Senate for District 30. He was re-elected in 2020. When he’s not at the state Capitol, he’s the deputy director of Promise Arizona, a community based nonprofit.