A man has been convicted of murder in the killing of a Washington state police officer shot by a deputy

A man from Washington state has been convicted of murder for his involvement in the tragic death of a police officer in 2022. The officer was mistakenly shot by a sheriff’s deputy.

Julio Segura, a resident of Yakima, was found guilty by a Clark County jury on multiple charges including first-degree murder, second-degree murder, robbery, possession of a stolen vehicle, and eluding police. These charges are in relation to the tragic death of Vancouver police officer Donald Sahota. This verdict was reported by Oregon Public Broadcasting.

He was cleared of other allegations, including the charge of attempted murder.

Sahota lost his life on January 29, 2022, when he was shot at his home in the city of Battle Ground.

Earlier in the day, Segura committed a robbery at a gas station near Vancouver, according to authorities. Following the incident, law enforcement engaged in a pursuit as Segura fled towards Battle Ground.

According to prosecutors, Segura fled the scene after the car crash, prompting deputies to use a drone to track his movements. They observed him walking along a street before eventually heading towards the Sahota residence located at the end of a private road.

In the drone footage, it can be seen that someone from the residence greeted Segura at the door and engaged in a conversation for a few minutes before the door was closed again, as mentioned in court documents. The wife of Sahota took immediate action and dialed 911 to inform the authorities that a man claimed to have been involved in a car accident and required assistance.

According to official documents, Deputy Jonathan Feller witnessed Sahota grabbing a firearm and sprinting towards the house. Acting swiftly, Feller discharged his weapon approximately four seconds after his arrival, unintentionally striking Sahota.

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Sahota’s cause of death, according to coroners, was determined to be gunshot wounds to the torso.

The prosecutors contended that Segura was responsible for Sahota’s death through his involvement in other criminal activities. They claimed that his actions posed a serious threat to the life of any individual.

Segura’s defense did not deny that he stole a car from a Yakima dealership and held up the gas station with a replica handgun. Instead, they argued that Segura was cornered by Sahota and that Feller recklessly opened fire on the unfolding scene.

During his testimony, Segura claimed that he had acted in self-defense when he stabbed Sahota.

Defense attorney Michele Michalek expressed on Friday that the case presented a significant challenge. She emphasized the necessity for Clark County to thoroughly evaluate their approach when it comes to handling incidents involving law enforcement officers.

According to Ed Dunkerly, a defense lawyer, there is a need for law enforcement to undergo more training. When asked about a potential appeal from Segura, Dunkerly mentioned that the defense team possesses a compelling argument.

Oregon Public Broadcasting reached out to Prosecutor Tony Golik for comment, but he did not respond. Previously, Golik stated that Feller would not be charged with any criminal offenses as he believed Feller acted in good faith during a chaotic incident while responding to an armed robbery suspect.

After reviewing the shooting incident, a panel of prosecutors was unable to come to a consensus on whether Feller’s use of force was reasonable. As a result, the decision was made to take action.

In a statement released on Friday, Vancouver Police Chief Jeff Mori expressed his understanding of the long-awaited relief felt by Sahota’s family and friends.

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Mori expressed gratitude for the verdict, but acknowledged that the pain and tragedy of Don’s death still linger.

The sentencing date has been scheduled for June 27th.

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