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State v. Sety

Court of Appeals of Arizona
590 P.2d 470 (1979)


Facts

On March 19, 1976, Donald Cue initiated a confrontation with David Sety (defendant) at an isolated campground where Sety was sleeping. During the confrontation, Cue loaded a rifle and began pointing it at Sety. Sety then pulled out his own pistol and told Cue to "freeze." When Cue did not freeze, Sety fired two warning shots at Cue and eventually shot Cue in the side. Sety told Cue that he was making a citizen's arrest and ordered Cue to walk toward the area dam keeper’s house. On route to the dam keeper, Cue attempted to escape, and Sety shot at him. The shots struck Cue's back but did not kill him. Sety testified that when Cue attempted another escape, Sety shot at Cue again. Sety further testified that when he went to check on Cue after shooting him, Cue reached up to grab Sety, and Sety's pistol discharged as Sety tried to move away from Cue. Cue died from wounds related to this final shot. A jury convicted Sety of second-degree murder. The trial court then reduced the charge to voluntary manslaughter and sentenced Sety to a prison term of not less than nine nor more than ten years. Sety appealed the judgment and sentence, and the prosecution (plaintiff) appealed the trial court’s reduction of the conviction from second-degree murder to voluntary manslaughter.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Schroeder, J.)

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