Weekly Arizona News

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Posted By Don Smith
Boxing Fans,
      Bob and Debbie Vaughan are the proud parents of three highly competitive and intelligent  sons who were given  strong and unique first names: Dakota, Saxon and Talon. Early in their childhood they showed an interest in Martial Arts and boxing.  Bob, a highly decorated military veteran, turned the family garage into a gym so his young future warriors could be the best they could be. There were some pretty intense moments. During one  sparring session, a curious neighbor reportedly called Child Protection Services   to report what he/she thought was child abuse. The printed story, Prescott  Daily Courier, stated that authorities arrived to learn that one of the boys suffered a bloody nose while defending himself in a spirited training session  with his brother. It took awhile for the dispatched investigators to come to the conclusion that the confrontation was an integral part of their self defense training. Bob, a paramedic, is their principal  coach and mentor.     
     All three brothers currently attend Prescott High School where they excel in sport (wrestling) and academics(Honor Roll). Collectively, the boys have won more than 100 medals and trophies as a result of their athletic prowess . 17 year old Dakota recently returned from Russia where he spent time as a foreign exchange student and continued his study into  martial arts . He now holds a prestigious Blue Belt in Jujitsu. 15 year old fraternal twins  Talon and Saxon made the varsity wrestling team as freshmen, a remarkable feat duplicated by Dakota in his 1st year at Prescott High School. Down the road, Team Vaughan will ponder their future and study their options which could  include College, Military Service, MMA career and just maybe the 2016 Olympics…choice is good.   
 On September 8th  the Vaughan  Brothers will represent Golden Cobra Fitness Center in the IKF Mauy Thai Kickboxing Championships held at Tim’s Toyota Center in Prescott Valley Arizona. Talon Vaughan is matched against Jordan Vasquez ,New Mexico, in a Southwest Regional Flyweight Title  bout. Saxon takes on Slade Ring ,New Mexico, in a Southwest Regional Light Welterweight Title contest. Dakota is on the card but his opponent  is unknown at this time. The event is being promoted as “Triple Title Tornado”. According to Promoter Richard Williams; the third promised kickboxing title bout is being finalized and will be announced soon. Several USA Amateur Boxing bouts will also be featured on the program. For more information and directions…click on:www.goldencobraoffitness.com. Tickets start at $10.00 and 1st bell chimes at 3 PM sharp….enjoy!
Pedro Medel teaches boxing at Topside Boxing Gym in Phoenix, a facility he owns  and operates. Recently, Claudia Atondo, a student, came to to him for advice and after hearing her story, Pedro brought her over to our office to share the story in an effort to help the beleaguered 29 year old mother of three young boys. She also raises her teenage  cousin.
    Ironically, the incident happened on December 7, 2011 , a day that will be forever remembered as her own personal  “Pearl Harbor” day. It started off innocently enough and then the phone rang. It was her father, he needed a ride to a Target Store on 44th Street in Phoenix. He told her, he needed to drop off something to someone who was waiting in front of the Target Store. Her dad didn’t say who the person was or what the drop was all about. She didn’t ask; he didn’t tell.  Claudia did ask her boyfriend if he wanted to go and he said sure and volunteered to drive. She was sitting in the passenger front position  when they pulled up to the her Father’s house. He was carrying a closed cooler  and after greeting his daughter her dad  jumped into the back seat.
    When they arrived a man,unknown to Claudia, approached the car popped his head  in the vehicle and was handed the cooler by Claudia’s Dad. The stranger looked at the contents and placed the cooler on Claudia’s lap. He then promised to come back and did after  he gave signal to a dozen or more DEA Agents who were hiding and waiting for his signal
  All three passengers were handcuffed and taken to a DEA office on Thomas Road near Central Avenue in Phoenix, Arizona. She was read her rights and  charged with one of possession of a controlled substance and one count of distributing a controlled substance. The stranger was an undercover DEA Agent  and the substance in the cooler was one   pound of 100% pure Meth. She was released on her own recognizance and staying with her mother. She was kicked out of her apartment after authorities searched her apartment. Nothing was found nor was there anything found  in the car at the scene  except what her father brought in his small cooler. She has no priors and no history of drug abuse or possession.  Somehow innocent until proven guilty has a hollow ring.
  Claudia is beside herself. She has a public defender but  appointed lawyer  wants the 29 year old mother of three to plead out and accept  the 88 month  to life offer on the table. Ms. Atondo flatly refuses that offer. Her court date is scheduled for October but she believes it will be moved to November. 
Coach Medel is her # 1 supporter. He is putting together a fundraiser   and  needs the boxing community to call 623-204-8958 and offer  to help.  
SHORT JABS: MMA Star Benson Henderson lives and trains in Glendale Arizona not Flagstaff as previously reported ……Jose Martell was never a sex con as suggested two written  columns ago. It was a typo that go by the eyes of proof readers Laverne & Shirley. Jose spent two years in prison for his first and only DUI. A rare call but Arizona has two eyes wide shut sometimes…..  Andrew “Hurricane ” Hernandez reports his right hand has mended and the 4-0-1 fighter, with a penchant for swearing, expects to fight soon in Arizona, California or Nevada……Iron Boy Promotions plans to offer less fights on their October 6 card at the Celebrity Theatre. Expect 8 instead of 10;but, the quality of the event will remain top notch. Same format: pro/am and unless there is a change; be ready for 4 rounders and expect Victor Castro, Carlos Castro and Edgar Brito to be part of the lineup…….Arizona MMA Star Aaron Simpson has a pending gig in Minnesota sometime in September. Francine, his mother, works at Power MMA Fitness which is owned by Aaron , Ryan Bader and another ASU Alumni. ..Former heavyweight Champion Mike Tyson has written a book and performed in a biographical stage play. He omitted some of the funny or dumb things , in the play and book, that happened to him when he was living  in Arizona…..UNTIL NEXT TIME!