By Associated Press - Tuesday, April 27, 2021

RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) - A Pasco man has been sentenced to 19 years in prison for the shooting death of a co-worker in Burbank, south of the Tri-Cities.

A Walla Walla County jury found Edgar Chavez Beltran, 31, guilty of second-degree murder in March, The Tri-City Herald reported. Judge Brandon L. Johnson sentenced him last Thursday in the death of Leopoldo Nunez Parra, 42.

Chavez Beltran and Nunez Parra, of Pasco, worked together as farm laborers but they didn’t get along, according to court records.

On Oct. 9, 2019, they were in a Ford F-550 together shortly before 7 p.m.

Chavez Beltran initially told Walla Walla County sheriff’s investigators that he put a phone in his pocket and Nunez Parra lunged at him, so he took out a handgun and shot at him 11 times, according to court records.

Two shots hit Nunez Parra in the head, according to court records. Chavez Beltran called 911 to report the shooting.

At his trial, Chavez Beltran gave a different version of events, claiming he was defending himself, according to the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin.

He told jurors that Nunez Parra was suspicious of him and acting skittish before he got into the truck. He said he took out the gun and, when Nunez Parra reached for it, Chavez Beltran fired a shot.

He testified they scuffled and the gun went off.

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