Democrat Arizona state Sen. Tony Navarrete has been arrested and accused of sexual conduct involving a minor, police announced Friday.
Fox 10 reported that Navarrete, 35, was accused of abusing a boy he was living with for several years, according to court documents.
“The boy, now 16, told detectives that Navarrete touched his genitals with his hands and mouth, starting when he was around 12 or 13 and continuing through his 15th birthday. The teen said he suffers from anxiety and anger that stems from the abuse,” the outlet continued:
In a phone call recorded by police on Thursday afternoon, Navarrete apologized to the teen, saying he regretted his actions and would have to live with them for the rest of his life, according to the court records. When asked why he did it, he told the boy he “wasn’t well,” detectives wrote. The teen’s younger brother, now 13, told police that Navarrete touched his upper leg inside his shorts, causing the boy to slap away the hand and get up, detectives wrote in a probable cause affidavit filed in court.
Navarrete appeared in court Friday but did not enter a plea regarding the charges, which included child molestation and sexual contact with a minor.
“Maricopa County Superior Court Commissioner Steve McCarthy set the $50,000 bond requested by prosecutor Jeanine Sorrentino. Sorrentino said Navarrete faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 49 years if he’s convicted of all charges,” the Fox article read.
AZ SENATOR ARRESTED: #ABC15 has confirmed through multiple sources that Sen. Tony Navarette (D) was arrested tonight for “sexual misconduct with a minor”. The alleged incident happened in 2019. pic.twitter.com/BuyTYGqgxY
— Nicole Valdes (@NicoleValdesTV) August 6, 2021
In a social media post on Friday evening, Arizona Senate Democrats urged Navarrete to step down.
“In light of these disturbing charges, House and Senate Democrats are calling on Senator Navarrete to resign immediately. Abuse of this kind is intolerable and our hearts go out to the victims,” the post read.
According to the Arizona state legislature’s website, Navarrete was elected in 2016 to represent the state’s 30th District as state representative and in 2018 he was elected to serve Arizona’s 30th District as state senator.