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Arizona rancher charged with first-degree murder claims self-defense, says migrants shot at him first
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Arizona rancher charged with first-degree murder claims self-defense, says migrants shot at him first

The Arizona rancher who was charged with first-degree murder in the death of a Mexican migrant on his property claims that a group of migrants shot at him first.

The attorney for George Allen Kelly said in court documents that the 73-year-old fired his rifle in self-defense after hearing a single gunshot from “a group of men moving through the trees around his home" on January 30.

Attorney Brenna Larkin said that the men confronted Kelly at his ranch. "They were armed with AK-47 rifles, dressed in khakis and camouflaged clothing and carrying large bakcpacks. None of them were known to him. He had not given any of them permission to come onto his land," she wrote.

“Mr. Kelly, fearing for his life and safety, fired several shots from his rifle, hoping to scare them away from him, his wife, his animals, and his home,” Larkin continued. “As he shot, Mr. Kelly took care to aim well over the heads of the armed group of men.”

Some time later, Kelly found the unarmed body of 48-year-old Gabriel Cuen-Butimea, who was identified by a Mexican voting card found by law enforcement authorities. Investigators said that the victim had a visible gunshot wound.

Kelly is being held on a $1 million bond for the charges.

Supporters of the rancher stepped up to contribute money for his legal defense to a GoFundMe account, but the company shut down the campaign on the basis that it violated their policy against raising funds for the "legal defense of anyone formally charged with an alleged violent crime."

Neighbors near Kelly's 100 acre ranch along the U.S.-Mexico border said the area is usually safe and peaceful.

Here's more about Kelly's self-defense claim:

Arizona rancher charged with murder says it was self-defense | Rush Hourwww.youtube.com

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Carlos Garcia

Carlos Garcia

Staff Writer

Carlos Garcia is a staff writer for Blaze News.