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News / Clark County News

Jurors watch aerial footage in trial of man accused in death of Vancouver police Officer Donald Sahota

Video shows struggle between defendant Julio Segura, Sahota in officer's Battle Ground driveway

By Becca Robbins, Columbian staff reporter
Published: May 7, 2024, 6:49pm

Jurors watched aerial footage and heard police radio traffic Wednesday in the murder trial of a Yakima man accused in the 2022 death of off-duty Vancouver police Officer Donald Sahota.

Julio Segura, 22, is charged in Clark County Superior Court with three counts of first-degree murder and one count each of attempted first-degree murder, second-degree murder, attempted first-degree kidnapping, first-degree burglary, first-degree robbery, possession of a stolen motor vehicle and attempt to elude a pursuing police vehicle.

A Clark County Sheriff’s Office drone and Portland police airplane captured aerial footage of the struggle between Sahota, 52, and Segura in Sahota’s Battle Ground driveway.

The footage also captured the moment law enforcement arrived at Sahota’s house and sheriff’s Deputy Jonathan Feller mistakenly fatally shot an armed and injured Sahota as he tried to get inside his house.

Segura is accused of stabbing Sahota multiple times, moments before Feller arrived and mistakenly shot Sahota.

Law enforcement officers from multiple agencies were chasing Segura in connection with an armed robbery of an Orchards gas station. Investigators say Segura ran from a disabled stolen car he was driving to Sahota’s house and asked to come inside. Sahota then tried to detain Segura in his driveway, according to investigators.

Although the Clark County Medical Examiner’s Office found Sahota died from gunshot wounds, an autopsy determined his stab wounds were life-threatening.

Segura is accused of causing Sahota’s death in multiple ways. The state alleges Segura displayed extreme indifference to human life, creating the risk of Sahota’s death. It also alleges Sahota’s death happened as a part of Segura’s attempts to commit other crimes, including burglary of the Sahota home and kidnapping of Sahota’s wife, Dawnese Sahota, court records show.

The jury viewed thermal video from the drone that showed black silhouettes of Segura and Sahota wrestling in the driveway, as well as law enforcement officers responding. They also watched regular video from the drone, which captured how dark the scene was that night.

Jurors then heard a 911 call from Dawnese Sahota, who was inside the house while the two men struggled in the driveway. She could be heard screaming as she ran through the house once Segura got inside and continuing to scream once she exited the garage and saw her wounded husband on their front porch.

Trial is scheduled to resume Wednesday with more state’s witnesses.

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