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Man pleads guilty to fatally shooting Nogales police officer in 2018, avoiding death penalty

Man pleads guilty to fatally shooting Nogales police officer in 2018, avoiding death penalty

Mug shots 2019

David Ernesto Murillo, 28, was sentenced to life in prison September 11 for fatally shooting Nogales Police Officer Jesus Cordova on April 27, 2018. Read more here

The 29-year-old man accused of fatally shooting a Nogales Police officer in 2018 pleaded guilty Wednesday to all 39 charges related to the incident, officials say.

David Ernesto Murillo was arrested in connection to the killing of Officer Jesus Cordova on April 27, 2018, near Villa's Market in Nogales.

The charges against Murillo ranged from first-degree murder to armed robbery with a deadly weapon to impersonating a peace officer, according to the Santa Cruz County Attorney's Office.

The window of this Nogales police cruiser was shattered by gunfire when Nogales Police Officer Jesus Cordova was shot.

With the plea agreement, Murillo avoids the death penalty, which Santa Cruz County prosecutors were seeking early in the case.

During the incident, Cordova was attempting to stop a carjacking involving Murillo near the market when Murillo got out of the vehicle and fired his AR-15 semi-automatic rifle at least 10 times at Cordova's patrol car, Nogales Police said in 2018.

It was the first time since 1888 a Nogales police officer was shot and killed in the line of duty, according to Daily Star archives.

Murillo's sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 11.

Contact Star reporter Shaq Davis at 573-4218 or

On Twitter: @ShaqDavis1

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Shaq is a public safety reporter and the Road Runner columnist, keeping readers up to date on transportation news. In 2017, he started as an apprentice and later worked part-time until graduating from the UA and being offered a full-time position in 2018.

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