Argument between neighbors turns deadly in Phoenix neighborhood

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by Natalie Rivers

azfamily.com

Posted on May 6, 2010 at 3:19 PM

Updated Friday, May 7 at 11:11 AM

PHOENIX - A Phoenix man is dead after being shot by his neighbor near Southern Avenue and 7th Street.

Phoenix police identified the suspect as Gary Kelly, 50, who apparently got into a dispute with his neighbor Juan Varela, 44.

Police say Kelly used racial slurs against the victim when things took a violent turn shortly after 1 p.m. on Thursday.

After the racial slurs were used Varela's brother came outside and observed Varela walking over to Kelly and either attempting to or kicking Kelley. Kelley then pulled a gun from his waistband, shot Varela and walked back to his house.

Varela was taken to the hospital in very serious condition where he later died from his injuries.

Police took Kelley into custody. He appeared intoxicated and was not armed.

Officers found the gun believed to have been used in the shooting inside his home while serving a search warrant.

Kelley has lived two houses down from Varela for a number of years and have gotten into altercations during the past several years.

Kelley faces one count of murder and two counts of aggravated assault.

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