by Jim Clayborn
Kino Springs, AZ – A 73-year-old Arizona rancher was arrested and charged with first-degree murder for fatally shooting a Mexican migrant (likely an illegal alien) on his ranch.
George Alan Kelly, 73, was arrested for killing Gabriel Cuen-Butimea, on his Arizona ranch in Kino Springs just outside of Nogales, Mexico on January 30.
Kelly is being held at the Santa Cruz County jail on $1 million bond.
George Kelly asked the judge to reduce his bail so he can go home to take care of his wife.
“She’s there by herself… nobody to take care of her, the livestock or the ranch,” he said, according to Nogales International. “And I’m not going anywhere. I can’t come up with a million dollars,” he said.
According to reports, Gabriel Cuen-Butimea has a history of illegally crossing into the United States and multiple deportations.
He is believed to have been in the US illegally when he was fatally shot.
Authorities found a Mexican voter registration card on the decedent.
Nogales International reported:
A 73-year-old man is being held on a first-degree murder charge after authorities say they discovered the body of a still-unidentified male on his Kino Springs property Monday evening.
George Alan Kelly made his initial appearance Tuesday morning at Nogales Justice Court, where Justice of the Peace Emilio Velasquez set bond at $1 million.
Chief Deputy Gerardo Castillo of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office said investigators were still trying to clarify the circumstances surrounding the incident, as well as establish a motive.
A sheriff’s dispatch report shows a call coming in at 2:40 p.m. Monday from the U.S. Border Patrol, relaying information about a “possible active shooter” in the area of Sagebrush Road. The Border Patrol had apparently received a report from a person at the scene, who mentioned a “group of people running” and said he “was unsure if he was getting shot at as well.”Advertisement
The entry identified the person at the scene as “Allen.”
Castillo said sheriff’s deputies responded to the area following that report, but found nothing.
However, at 5:56 p.m., the sheriff’s office received another report of shots fired at the property. This time, at 6:24 p.m., deputies located the body of a deceased adult Hispanic male, Castillo said.
There was no weapon found on or near the victim, whose body was discovered approximately 100 yards from Kelly’s home with one visible gunshot wound, according to the Sheriff.
Arizona law allows you to use physical force and deadly force when reasonable to prevent several serious crimes – including burglary in the first and second degree.
Although there is no explicit “Stand Your Ground” law, Arizona does not require individuals to retreat before defending themselves when they are in a threatening situation.