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Updated Aug 28, 2014 - 12:52 pm

Jury sentences cop killer Bryan Hulsey to death

Bryan Wayne Hulsey (Glendale Police Department Photo)

PHOENIX -- A Phoenix-area man who killed a Valley police officer was sentenced to death on Thursday.

Bryan Hulsey was found guilty July 28 in the 2007 murder of a Glendale police officer during a routine traffic stop.

"The jury's decision to impose the death penalty against Bryan Hulsey is a just punishment for the senseless slaughter of a public servant," Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery said in a release.

Hulsey, 40, was convicted of first-degree murder in the death of Officer Anthony Holly, 24. Hulsey also was found guilty of attempted first-degree murder of another officer.

Hulsey was a passenger in the vehicle that had been pulled over for speeding and not having a license plate. Holly was there to serve as backup to another officer who made the traffic stop.

Hulsey exited the vehicle, said, "I've got something for you," and fired two shots, one of which hit Holly, prosecutors said.

"The defendant's aim was true," Prosecutor Juan Martinez said. "One bullet was all it took to the face of Anthony Holly to kill him -- Officer Anthony Holly, who was just doing his job."

Hulsey's lawyers denied he killed Holly and instead alleged that another officer who had pulled over the vehicle had panicked and unintentionally shot him.

"He cannot be convicted of murder because of that accident," Hulsey's attorney, Michael Reeves, said.

Prosecutors said there was no credible evidence that Holly was shot by the other officer and that the exhumation request was "wishful thinking" by defense lawyers who hope they may turn up something from the body.

Prosecutors said Hulsey was upset during the stop and complained that they were being pulled over for having a cracked windshield. Martinez said the three people in the vehicle, including Hulsey, had smoked methamphetamine the night before and the morning of the traffic stop and that Hulsey gave his methamphetamine to a backseat passenger once the vehicle was pulled over.

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