Yuma County sheriff ‘cautiously optimistic’ after Sen. Sinema, others visit border

Jan 11, 2023, 4:35 AM | Updated: 8:00 am

(Twitter Photo/@SenatorSinema)...

(Twitter Photo/@SenatorSinema)

(Twitter Photo/@SenatorSinema)

PHOENIX — Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot said he is “cautiously optimistic” about immigration reform shortly after a bipartisan group of U.S. senators led by Kyrsten Sinema visited the southern Arizona border city Tuesday.

“I’m going to be cautiously optimistic to be quite honest with you after sitting there,” Wilmot told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s The Gaydos and Chad Show.

“We weren’t asked a whole lot of questions as far as other than ‘what was impacting us locally,’ is what they were asking, and that includes our tribal partners, as well.”

The sheriff’s comments to the bipartisan delegation comes as Wilmot also says the border town is in need of reimbursement funding for local hospitals and solutions to strengthen the environment.

During the visit, he was able to tell the senators they need to — whether they want to or not — enforce the immigration system before changes can be made.

“‘We need to get rid of their personal and political ideologies, get back to public safety and enforcing the rule of the law,'” Wilmot said to the delegation.

“‘I get that you don’t like the immigration system, but until then, you need to enforce it and then you can change it. Once you change it, then we’ll deal with that.'”

Sinema led the group comprised of six senators and various politicians in Arizona, addressing the impacts of the border and immigration crisis on nearby communities.

She said when they return to Washington, they’re going to “figure out how to increase the support that we’re giving to our men and women who provide this border security, get them back out on the lines doing their job, reform the asylum process and create a more efficient and safe, humane process for folks.”

“It’ll be our charge to take what we’ve learned back to Washington D.C. and to talk to our colleagues on both sides of the aisle to create the groundswell for this bipartisan process to solve it,” Sinema added.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Andrew Ormsby, 22, was arrested on Wednesday, police said. (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office photo)...

Phoenix police arrest man accused of fatally shooting victim found in West Valley alley

Andrew Ormsby, 22, was arrested on Wednesday for his involvement in the shooting death of Roy Orozco, 24, Phoenix police said.

4 hours ago

Guests mill about at a previous Guild Indian Fair & Market on the grounds of the Heard Museum in Ph...

Heard Museum in Phoenix holding 66th annual Guild Indian Fair & Market this weekend

The Heard Museum in Phoenix is holding its signature event this weekend, the 66th annual Guild Indian Fair & Market.

5 hours ago

This undated image provided by Mikel Desmond shows his brother Marcus Tessier, who turned up in Dem...

Associated Press

Missing teen with autism found in New Mexico, about 200 miles away from his Arizona home

A missing teen with autism has been found in New Mexico — about 200 miles away from his home in southern Arizona.

7 hours ago

FILE - A group of migrants walk along the border in a remote part of the Arizona desert as they joi...

Associated Press

Bill in Arizona would punish migrants who enter country illegally

Republicans in Arizona are broadcasting a tough border stance with legislation aimed at punishing migrants who enter the United States illegally.

8 hours ago

Mugshot of Brandie Gotch, who faces multiple charges for an alleged rampage against children at a P...

Kevin Stone

West Valley mom accused of driving through park, injuring a child, while her kids were in truck

A woman was arrested Tuesday for allegedly driving her pickup truck through a West Valley park and hitting a child after she thought her kids were being bullied.

10 hours ago

Three former Arizona Department of Education employees are accused of obtaining funds from the stat...

Former Arizona education employees accused of stealing money from ESA program

Three former Arizona Department of Education employees are accused of obtaining funds from the state's school voucher program for personal use, authorities announced Thursday.

11 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.


Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.


Canvas Annuity

Interest rates may have peaked. Should you buy a CD, high-yield savings account, or a fixed annuity?

Interest rates are the highest they’ve been in decades, and it looks like the Fed has paused hikes. This may be the best time to lock in rates for long-term, low-risk financial products like fixed annuities.

Yuma County sheriff ‘cautiously optimistic’ after Sen. Sinema, others visit border