Yuma police officer is cleared in fatal shooting last year

Posted: Updated:
(Source: Yuma Police Department) (Source: Yuma Police Department)
YUMA, AZ (AP) -

The Yuma County Sheriff's Office has determined that the fatal shooting of an armed man by a Yuma police officer late last year was justified.

Two officers responded Nov. 24 to a Yuma residence on a domestic violence call.

[RELATED: Yuma police: Shot fired, man killed in encounter with officers]

The policemen say they encountered 51-year-old Steve Steenhard, who was standing in the home's garage in front of an open gun safe.

The officers reported seeing Steenhard reach into the safe.

[SLIDESHOW: 2017 officer-involved shootings]

Steenhard was shot by one of the policeman and a semi-automatic handgun was located near Steenhard's body.

[READ MORE: Yuma PD: Man shot after pointing weapon at an officer]

He later died at a hospital.

County Attorney Jon Smith wrote in a letter last Friday to Yuma Police Chief Chief John Lekan that officer Sabino Saucedo was justified in using deadly force in the situation to protect himself and his fellow policeman.

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