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Sep 4, 2013 8:40 PM by Eric Ross

Ex-Ariz. officer concludes murder trial testimony

PHOENIX (AP) - A former Phoenix police officer charged with murder and animal cruelty has concluded his testimony after nearly two days on the witness stand.

Richard Chrisman maintains the 2010 shootings of 29-year-old Daniel Rodriguez and his dog were justified because Rodriguez reached for the officer's gun and tried to attack him with a bicycle while Chrisman was responding to a domestic violence call.

Chrisman has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder, aggravated assault and animal cruelty.

Prosecutors say Chrisman abused his police powers by killing an unarmed man.

Chrisman acknowledged on the stand that he was the aggressor early on in the domestic violence call. But he noted it was his job to restrain a resisting suspect.

Trial began in August. Chrisman's attorneys may wrap up their case this week.

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