Hayden mayor pleads guilty to felony charge

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Charles Vega By Jennifer Thomas Charles Vega By Jennifer Thomas

FLORENCE, Ariz. (AP) -- Pinal County prosecutors say Hayden Mayor Charles Vega will likely get a probation term when he is sentenced on a felony charge next month.

The County Attorney's Office says Vega pleaded guilty May 19 to one count of attempted fraudulent schemes and practices under a plea agreement that calls for a probation sentence.

Vega was acting fire chief when he was arrested in February 2013 and later charged with theft and trafficking in stolen property. He was elected mayor in March 2013.

He was accused of stealing money from a fundraiser for the Hayden Fire Department and of taking at least one chainsaw from the Asarco Mine in Kearney.

He is scheduled to be sentenced June 16 in Pinal County Superior Court.

League of Arizona Cities and Towns Executive Director Ken Strobeck says the felony conviction means Vega can no longer hold public office.

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Former Hayden fire chief arrested on theft charges