A northern Arizona man has been sentenced to more than 17 years in federal prison for a fatal shooting on the Navajo Nation.
31-year-old Leland Sam Buckinghorse pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in an agreement with prosecutors. He recently was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Phoenix.
On Dec. 11, 2014, Buckinghorse engaged in an argument with the victim outside of Buckinghorse’s house on the Navajo Nation Indian Reservation. B
Police say Buckinghorse went inside his house and located a .22 caliber rifle, loaded the rifle, went back outside, and shot the victim once in the chest area. The victim, also a member of the Navajo Nation, died as a result of his injuries.
According to court documents, Buckinghorse claimed the man he shot had raped him earlier that month while he was intoxicated.
He told authorities he never reported the incident to police out of fear of the man.
The 34-year-old man was unarmed.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
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