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Phoenix police officer charged with murder

PHOENIX, Oct. 14 (UPI) -- A Phoenix police officer who shot an unarmed man while responding to a domestic dispute was charged Thursday with second-degree murder.

Richard Chrisman is free on bail, KPHO-TV, Phoenix, reported. He was arrested on an assault charge immediately after Daniel Rodriguez, 29, was killed Oct. 5.

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Maricopa County Attorney Rick Romley announced Thursday that a grand jury returned an indictment that also includes charges of aggravated assault and cruelty to an animal. Investigators say Chrisman stunned Rodriguez, killed his dog and held a gun to his head before firing the fatal shot.

"We as citizens put our trust and our lives in their hands and when one abuses and violates that trust, we must hold them accountable to the community for that breach," Romley said.

Phoenix Police Chief Jack Harris called the murder charge a "rare occurrence" and promised to "deal with this objectively and based on the facts."

Romley's office released a report that showed Chrisman was disciplined for planting drug paraphernalia on a mentally disabled woman. While he received only a one-day suspension, he was placed on a list of officers whose testimony was potentially untrustworthy.

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