'Migrant' shot dead by rancher was cartel drug smuggler, says ex-Border Patrol chief

The 'migrant' shot dead by an Arizona rancher on his land last month was likely a cartel drug smuggler or scout, according to a former Border Patrol chief, who says the area is known for 'violence'. 

George Alan Kelly, 73, was arrested on charges of first degree murder for shooting Gabriel Cuen-Butimea on January 30 at his home. That charge has now been downgraded to a second degree murder charge. 

He denies the murder, insisting he only ever fired warning shots when he saw what he perceived to be a gang of cartel smugglers on his land.  

Former Border Patrol Chief Rodney Scott, who was previously a supervisor in the area, told NewsNation that the area has a 'propensity for violence'. 

'Everything that I have seen, my professional experience would tell me that that guy was either a scout or an actual guide for a group.