That being said, I didn't get great pictures either, and I'll be keeping a careful eye out for this rufous-headed rascal next time.
Apparently it's pretty rare to see them in the lower altitudes, and this was the first reported/documented sighting at the Desert Botanical Gardens, YAY.
Here in the sunlight you can see the rufous cap, as well as the facial stripes and even the hint of a dark line running down the chin. These all help to distinguish the Rufous-Crowned Sparrow from look-alikes such as the Lark and Chipping Sparrows.
In addition to the rufous crown, you can see the peculiarly dark wings. Sparrows usually have a lot of mottling or streaking with white and lighter browns, but not this guy. The tail is similarly dark, but I cut it off in the picture...I know I know.