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October 22, 2014

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Police ‘confident’ suspect was lone gunman in Thursday’s Strip shooting

Image

Steve Marcus

Wrecked cars are shown on Las Vegas Boulevard and Flamingo Avenue as Las Vegas Metro Police investigate a shooting and multi-car accident that left three people dead and three injured on the Las Vegas Strip early Thursday morning, Feb. 21, 2013. EDITOR’S NOTE: This photo has been digitally altered to obscure an image of one of the victims.

Updated Monday, Feb. 25, 2013 | 3:50 p.m.

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Ammar Harris is sought in connection with the deaths of three people on the Strip on Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013.

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Metro Police released this second photo of Ammar Harris in the hopes of locating the suspect in connection with the deaths of three people on the Strip on Feb. 21, 2013.

Shooting Media Address

Las Vegas Metro Police Capt. Chris Jones addresses the media about shooting suspect Ammar Harris, Monday, Feb. 25, 2013. Launch slideshow »

There is little doubt in the minds of Metro Police that Ammar Harris, wanted in connection with last week’s shooting on Las Vegas Boulevard that ended in the deaths of three people, was the lone gunman, Metro Police said in a news conference Monday afternoon.

“We are confident Ammar Harris was and is the only shooter that night,” Lt. Ray Steiber, head of Metro’s homicide division, said in announcing a warrant had been issued charging Harris with three counts of murder.

Ammar Harris, 26, is suspected of shooting and killing Kenneth Cherry Jr. from a black Range Rover early Thursday on the Las Vegas Strip near Flamingo Road. After Cherry was shot, his Maserati crashed into multiple vehicles, including a taxi that exploded on impact at Las Vegas Boulevard and Flamingo Road. Cherry was killed, along with the taxi driver, Michael Boldon, 62, of Las Vegas, and a passenger in the taxi, Sandra Sutton-Wasmund, 48, of Maple Valley, Wash. An unidentified passenger in the Maserati was grazed by a gunshot but has survived.

Police found the Range Rover on Saturday afternoon at the Meridian apartments on Flamingo Road near Koval Lane, but there was no sign of Harris, who also goes by the name Ammar Asim Faruq Harris.

He is described as a 5-foot-11, 180-pound black man with brown hair, brown eyes and several distinct tattoos, including a heart-shaped one below his right eye and a large owl on his neck.

Police urged anyone with information about the suspect’s location to contact authorities — and they issued a warning to anyone helping him elude capture.

“You will be arrested and prosecuted,” said Capt. Chris Jones, who oversees Metro’s robbery and homicide bureau. “You may think you’re being a friend, but keep in mind that Ammar Harris is wanted for the murder of three citizens.”

Steiber said no weapons were found in and no shots were fired from the Maserati. Asked about reports about Cherry's background, Steiber said, "He is a victim of murder. That's what we're focused on."

Police believe the shooting occurred after a verbal altercation between Cherry and Harris at the Aria valet area spilled onto the Strip. Harris had been in a nightclub before the altercation, Steiber said.

Steiber would not say how many people were in the Range Rover with Harris, nor would he comment on whether any of them were in custody. He said there were no weapons in the vehicle Saturday when police recovered it.

Steiber did not directly address reports the search for Harris now was focused on the southeastern United States. Rather, Steiber said the search extended "from Maine to California."

Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson said a warrant for Harris’ arrest was issued late Friday.

Wolfson, who attended the news conference but didn't speak to the media until afterward, said his office had been involved in the case since “day one,” when two prosecutors responded to the scene of the deadly incident.

“This was horrendous behavior,” Wolfson said. “It was reckless. It was callous. We’re not going to tolerate this in this community.”

Police urge anyone with information regarding Harris’ whereabouts to call the Metro Police homicide division at (702) 828-3521 or Crime Stoppers at (702) 385-5555.

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  1. Someone needs to put Thug Irkle away....this scumbag needs to get off the streets.

  2. .....If the two cars were driving down the same street, and shots were fired from the range rover to the maserati, hitting the driver of the maserati...it's likely that the range rover was on the left hand side of the maserati. making it more likely that the shooter, was on the right side of the range rover. not the left hand side, indicating he were the driver.

    just a thought....this guy wasnt alone in the range rover when this happened. the photo of the range rover shows no gun activity. it's likely the shooter wasn't shooting from the drivers side, but the passenger side. so why aren't the police saying they're looking for other people in connection with this gunman? most guns arent easy to shoot, nevertheless drive a car and shoot them accurately.

    What's up with metro only giving the info on one person in the range rover? Sorry metro, your story like usual doesn't ad up.

  3. @ Judgeesmales - Sometimes law enforcement has to hold back information when a case is under investigation. Also, if the passenger in the Maserati is considered a witness, considering the background of the people involved, the police may want to keep that person's name confidential so they are kept safe, especially as a witness.

    What doesn't make sense to me is that the police, Sun, or any other news source would omit that there were other people present, especially as the story goes on to be covered.... Did the writer of this article forget about the passenger? Or are they not going to speculate that there may have been more witnesses? It does seem that the Sun is not practicing fair and investigative journalism, but instead reporting back what's told to them and how to repeat it by the police.

    A more fair reporting of this story would include that there was a passenger in the Maserati, and whether or not the Sun is able to share the name of the passenger because the police have requested to keep it confidential, or because they dont know the name.....wham bam, include the facts, dont omit them.

  4. i will agree that shooting out of the window of a moving range rover at a much lower sitting car while driving and probably at a high of speed would be difficult it could have been that one in a million lucky shot...it does happen...when i was a kid my friends and i would go out in the woods behind our houses and shoot 22s at birds or trees or whatever. (sorry to the birds), and one time i saw a bird about 25 yards way up in the tree, i swung my gun around, shot in the direction ...and i actually hit the bird, no real aim, no real planning, just dumb luck (not for the bird)...so it wouldnt be unheard of that some clown like the shooter was just going to fire off a few rounds, not really aiming, just to show how tough he was and actually hit the target...everyone that shoots has had this happen...it could be just that simple...and more likely what really happened...because shooting at a moving target from a moving truck, while probably toasted, and with the intent to kill would take a very skilled marksman...

  5. Ok-what is going to happen to the other fellas in the Range Rover? Have any of them been identified? When the group that was involved in the shooting of Officer Trevor Nettleton was identified they were all charged with crimes - even though they were not all 'shooters'.

    Have we already cut 'deals' with the other passengers or will they ALL be prosecuted?