ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A federal judge found an ex-convict guilty Friday of illegally possessing a pistol that police say was used to kill an Albuquerque police officer during a nighttime traffic stop last year.
The verdict announced in a courtroom packed with law enforcement officers and relatives of Officer Daniel Webster followed a two-day bench trial in which witnesses described seeing the shooting and a man wearing a helmet — later identified by police as defendant Davon Lymon — run away.
Webster died eight days after the October 2015 shooting that occurred in a Walgreens parking lot along Historic Route 66.
Lymon has not been charged in state court in Webster's death, but prosecutors say they are preparing to file charges in the case.
The federal trial on the firearms charge offered a look at the witnesses and evidence that state prosecutors could use if they pursue charges.
"This was an abbreviated version, I imagine," Kari Converse, an attorney for Lymon, told reporters after the federal case ended.
Michelle Webster, the fallen officer's widow, said she was pleased with the verdict.
Lymon, 35, could face up to 10 years in prison for the firearms charge and up to 20 years in a separate federal case on drug charges.
Authorities said he dealt drugs to an undercover federal agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in early September 2015 and again a few weeks later on Oct. 2, 2015. He also sold a weapon to an agent in that case, authorities said.
Lymon has pleaded guilty to the drug charges involving the trafficking of heroin.
Webster, 47, was a highly decorated Albuquerque police officer and former Army Ranger described by colleagues as one of the city's finest officers.
During the federal trial, prosecutors played a minute-long video taken with Webster's lapel camera of the struggle and shooting that occurred within 30 seconds after Webster pulled over Lymon.
Police said Lymon had been driving a motorcycle with a stolen license plate.
Savannah Garcia, 18, testified at the trial that she was riding on the back of the motorcycle and saw Lymon shoot Webster.
In the lapel video, the gunman is heard shouting and indicating he is in pain, while Webster yells for the man to give him his right hand so he can finish handcuffing him.
A federal complaint states that Webster tried to handcuff Lymon to the handlebar of the motorcycle as the suspect drew his weapon and opened fire a moment later.
Investigators said one bullet struck Webster in the face near his chin.
Lymon was found hours later holed up in a shed with Webster's handcuff on one of his wrists, police said.
Lymon still faces charge on three other federal firearm counts. His prior felonies include voluntary manslaughter, fraud and forgery.
"I hope that today's guilty verdict provides a measure of comfort to (Webster's) family and resonates as a beacon to the community he served," said Special Agent in Charge Thomas G. Atteberry of ATF's Phoenix division.
This story corrects a previous version that misspelled the first name of Lymon's attorney.