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Washington state police cleared in killing of Mexican farmworker

Antonio Zambrano Montes, 35, was shot by three officers during a confrontation on Feb. 10 caught on video at a busy intersection in the small city.

(Photo: Reuters)
English 23/09/2015 19:07 Reuters Actualizada 19:07

Two police officers who fatally shot a rock-throwing Mexican farmworker in Washington state earlier this year did not violate their department's policy and procedures and will return to duty immediately, the city of Pasco said on Wednesday.

Antonio Zambrano Montes, 35, was shot by three officers during a confrontation on Feb. 10 caught on video at a busy intersection in the small city, 200 miles (320 km) southeast of Seattle.

His death triggered protests in Pasco, which has a large Hispanic community, and his family and civil rights groups called for a federal probe into his killing. They have said Zambrano Montes spoke little English and had wrestled with drug abuse and other personal issues.

Police have said two stun guns failed to subdue Zambrano Montes, who died after being hit by 17 shots.

The city's statement said Pasco Police Chief Robert Metzger decided the responding officers had acted appropriately after he reviewed internal investigative reports and consulted an outside expert. It added he would return Officers Adam Wright and Adrian Alaniz to duty, effective immediately.

The third officer involved in the incident, Ryan Flanagan, has left the police department, the statement said.

"We have exhaustively reviewed this incident, and my decision to return the officers to duty was founded on the determination that their actions were consistent with Department policies and procedures," Metzger said in the statement.

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