Arizona border rancher charged with murder after shooting migrant
An elderly Arizona border rancher is facing murder charges after a Mexican national was shot and killed on the rancher’s property. The alleged shooting took place around sunset on January 30.
According to police, at around 6 p.m. on January 30, George Alan Kelly, 73, shot and killed Gabriel Cuen-Butimea, 48, a Mexican national. Kelly is now in jail in Santa Cruz, Arizona, awaiting $1 million bond. He is currently charged with first degree murder, the sheriff’s office said.
In an interview with Breitbart Texas, Santa Cruz Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Gerardo Castillo said the shooting took place at the border ranch in an area that was not close to the residence. Police were called at 5:56 p.m. Sunset on Jan. 30 in Nogales, Arizona was at 5:57 p.m.
Chief Castillo said detectives are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of the Mexican national. He said there was no evidence that Kelly knew Cuen-Butimea. Authorities identified the deceased from a Mexican voter’s card found on him.
Castillo said Kelly gave no statement to police and was represented by an attorney. Breitbart Texas has contacted the attorney for additional information, but no return calls have been received as of press time.
Chief Sheriff’s Deputy David Hathaway told Breitbart they have no information at this time about the deceased’s immigration status. It is unclear whether he had just crossed the border to the ranch or what was the reason he was on the ranch at the time of the shooting. No weapon belonging to the deceased was found at the scene.
The chief also could not reveal further details about the shooting, citing the ongoing investigation. He added that there is normally very little violence associated with migrants passing through the region.
A neighbor, who wished to remain anonymous, told KOLD 13 News that he was friends with Kelly and that Kelly had had issues with people on his property prior to this incident. The neighbor added that he thinks Kelly would have acted in good faith
Kelly is due to make her first court appearance on Wednesday. More information should be revealed at that time. Chief Castillo said the charges could change as more information becomes available.
Bob Price is associate editor and main contributor for the Breitbart Texas-Border team. He is an original member of the Breitbart Texas team. Price is a regular panelist on Fox 26 Houston’s What are you getting at? Sunday morning talk show. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.