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Elderly rancher charged with first-degree murder of Mexican migrant on his border property and held on $1 million bail
Image Source: KVOA-TV YouTube video screenshot composite

Elderly rancher charged with first-degree murder of Mexican migrant on his border property and held on $1 million bail

A 73-year-old rancher was charged with first-degree murder after he allegedly shot and killed a Mexican national who police believe may have been a migrant.

George Allen Kelly is being held on $1 million bail for a shooting death at his property on the evening of Monday, January 30.

The Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office in Nogales, Arizona, identified the victim as 48-year-old Gabriel Cuen-Butimea based on a Mexican voter card that he was carrying.

Chief Deputy Gerardo Castillo of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office said they were still investigating the motivation behind the lethal shooting.

“It doesn’t seem like Mr. Kelly and the decedent knew each other,” Castillo said.

He added that the victim had been found by police 100 to 150 yards from Kelly's home. He had a visible gunshot wound. Castillo said investigators had not been able to find the alleged murder weapon.

Records show that Kelly's property lies about a mile and a half north of the U.S.-Mexico border.

In a court appearance, Kelly asked for a lower bail based on the fact that his wife would be by herself without him.

“She's there by herself," said Kelly. "Nobody to take care of her, the livestock. Or the ranch."

A neighbor of Kelly's told KVOA-TV that he would not have shot anyone for no reason.

"I just want the outcome to be fair," said the neighbor who wished to remain anonymous. "If he did it, I'm sure he warned him and if he acted outside the law, well, I'm sure reluctantly he'll accept it."

A woman who lived nearby told KOLD-TV that migrants were regularly seen in the area but that it was safe.

“I drive through here everyday,” said Maria Castillo. “Late, early and never encountered anybody, I feel very safe living here in the area.”

Here's more about the arrest of Kelly:

Santa Cruz man arrested for homicidewww.youtube.com

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Carlos Garcia

Carlos Garcia

Staff Writer

Carlos Garcia is a staff writer for Blaze News.