Thursday, February 25, 2010

NLVPD looking for armed robber who hit two stores

This is a news release from North Las Vegas Police:
     North Las Vegas Detectives are seeking the public's help in identifying an armed robber believed to be responsible for three robberies in the City of North Las Vegas within two days.
     At about 3:10 a.m., on February 19, 2010, North Las Vegas Dispatchers received a report of a robbery at the Rebel Convenience store located at 3540 East Lake Mead Blvd. When officers responded, they learned that a black male adult entered the store, brandished a black semi-automatic handgun and demanded all of the money in the cash register.
     A little over an hour later, at about 4:23 a.m., on February 19, 2010, Officers responded to the Rebel Convenience store located at 2001 North Las Vegas Boulevard in reference to a robbery. Surveillance video substantiated that this robbery was committed by the same suspect (see the attached video link of the robbery). As the suspect exited the store, he fired once at witnesses that followed him out. No one was injured by the gunfire.

     The same man is also believed to be responsible for a third robbery that occurred at about 2:27 a.m., on February 20, 2010, again at the Rebel Convenience store located at 3540 East Lake Mead Boulevard.
     In all of these robberies, the suspect brandished a black semi-automatic firearm and demanded all of the money in the cash registers.

     Detectives are trying to identify the suspect in this series of robberies. He is a black male adult, about mid to late 20's, 5' 6", 190-200 lbs, with a short mustache. He was last seen wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, black jeans, and black Nike shoes with white soles.

     If you have information regarding this or any crime in or around North Las Vegas, contact CrimeStoppers at 702 385-5555. Cash rewards, up to $2,000 are offered to anonymous persons who telephone the Crime Stoppers hotline with information that leads to the arrest or indictment of the person(s) responsible for felony offenses.

New reward in case of missing Utah man

     The family of Utah resident Steven T. Koecher, who has been missing since Dec. 13, 2009, will announce a reward for information leading to his safe return or to the arrest and conviction of anyone responsible for his abduction or bodily harm.
     A news conference in cooperation with Henderson Mayor Andy A. Hafen and Henderson Police, will take place at 9 a.m., Friday, February 26, at the Henderson City Hall, 240 Water Street, Henderson, Nev. 89015.
     The reward will be coordinated through Crime Stoppers of Nevada, as well as police agencies in Southern Nevada and Southern Utah.
     In addition to the reward announcement, the press conference will cover several key topics, including:
  • Status of police investigations in St. George, Utah, and Henderson, Nev.
  • Status of Koecher’s missing passport and resulting police checks of airline boardings.
  • A report of what police and family investigations have uncovered about Koecher’s background.
  • Recent contacts between the St. George Police Department and the family of Susan Powell, a West Valley City, Utah, woman who went missing about the same time as Koecher.
  • An update on the campaign to put Steven’s photo on Las Vegas area milk cartons.
     Steven Koecher’s parents, brothers, and extended family members will arrive from the Salt Lake City to be present at the press conference and to respond to questions from Las Vegas area media. Frank Mahoney from the Nevada Center for Missing Loved ones will also be on hand.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Metro seeks help finding robbery suspects

Suspect 1: Black male, 5'8'', black sports coat, black tie, tan pants, black shoes

Suspect 2: Black male, 6'0'', blue sports coat, black pants, round silver glasses, armed with handgun

On January 22, 2010, the above pictured suspects were involved in an armed robbery to two citizens in a business near the 5000 block of Charleston. One of the suspects was armed with a handgun and demanded money from the citizens. The suspects stole an undisclosed amount of money and fled the business on foot. The suspects were last seen getting into a dark colored vehicle and fleeing the area in that vehicle.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department is requesting the public's assistance in identifying the described suspects. Anyone with information is urged to call the LVMPD Robbery Section at (702) 828-3591, or to remain anonymous, please call Crime Stoppers at (702) 385-5555.

Manhunt Monday - Brothers Wanted

     This weeks Manhunt Monday profiles two individuals, believed to be brothers, who are wanted suspects for multiple narcotics violations.
     Arturo Pintado-Lopez is a hispanic male adult, 36 years of age, standing 5'8" tall and weighing approximately 250 lbs. with brown hair and brown eyes. He sometimes uses the last names of Pintado and Lopez singularly. His last known address was in the 1200 block of Mews Lane in Las Vegas.
     Saul Partida-Ventura is a hispanic male adult, 33 years of age, standing 5'6" tall and weighing 150 lbs. with black hair and brown eyes. Partida-Ventura also sometimes uses the last names of:
  • Ventura,
  • Partidaventura, and
  • Venturapartida,
     His last known address was in the 1200 block of Mews Lane in Las Vegas.
     Both Pintado-Lopez and Partida-Ventura are wanted in connection with the sale of illegal narcotics to undercover police officers during the early part of 2009.
     Specifically, Arturo Pintado-Lopez is wanted for:
  • Trafficking in methamphetamine,
  • Trafficking in cocaine, and
  • Conspiracy to violate the Uniform Controlled Substance Act.
     Saul Partida-Ventura is wanted for:
  • Trafficking in methamphetamine,
  • Conspiracy to violate the Uniform Controlled Substance Act, and
  • D.U.I. - Alcohol
     Anyone with any information as to the location of either of these suspects is urged to contact the LV.M.P.D. Fugitive Detail at 828-3578 or Crime Stoppers at 385-5555.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Metro seeks help solving carjacking at Flamingo and Decatur on 1-6-10

On January 6, 2010 a white male adult used force to 'carjack' a victim in the area of Flamingo and Decatur. The suspect is believed to live in the area. The suspect was captured on surveillance tape just before the incident.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department is seeking assistance in identifying this subject. Anyone with information should call LVMPD Robbery Section at (702) 828-3591 or to remain anonymous, Crime Stoppers at (702) 385-5555.

DUI Diversion: House Arrest

     Today at 5pm we will air part two of Crime Tracker 3's examination of Clark County's DUI Court. This piece will focus on the "house arrest" portion of the program, where Metro Corrections Officers visit program participants at home or at their jobs to make sure they're obeying all the rules.
     Last night, Sophia got a call from the Hon. Anthony Abbatangelo, the municipal court judge that was in part one of our report. He said that he's already getting phone calls from people calling him "The Ice Cream Man."
    Here's a link to part one of our report.

Metro seeks help finding robbery suspect

The following is based on a news release from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.
Suspect: Hispanic male, mid 20's, 5'6", 160

On December 19, 2009, at approximately 3:30 a.m., the subject pictured above robbed a convenience store in the area of Stewart and Maryland Parkway. He approached the clerk with his hand in his pocket, simulated a weapon and demanded money. The suspect took money from the register drawer and was last seen entering a red or maroon SUV driven by a second Hispanic male.

Detectives are requesting the public's assistance in identifying this suspect. Anyone with information is urged to call the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Robbery Section at (702)828-3591 or, to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at (702)385-5555. A cash reward may be available to the person providing information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the suspect.

Contact: Sgt. Candelas - Las Vegas Metro Police Department / Robbery Section   (702) 828-3591

Metro Budget Town Hall Meetings

This is a news release CrimeTracker 3 received from Las Vegas Metro Police:

    Sheriff Douglas C. Gillespie invites the public to learn more about the financial aspect of policing our community. In February the Sheriff will be hosting three Town Hall meetings focusing on Metro’s budget. This is the same presentation, repeated at each location.
     Topics will include: LVMPD funding, More Cops Tax, budget cuts, staffing, changes to service, and Q & A with Sheriff Gillespie.
     The LVMPD wants to reassure the public that despite pending budget cuts, the Department remains committed to keeping officers on the street and achieving its vision of making Las Vegas the safest community in America.

Monday, February 22, 2010
6:00 p.m.
Sierra Vista High School Cafeteria
8100 W. Robindale

Thursday, February 25, 2010
6:00 p.m.
Whitney Library, Concert Hall
5175 E. Tropicana

Monday, February 15, 2010

DUI Diversion

Sometimes, you don't find the story you think you're going to find when you start out. Back in January, the CrimeTracker 3 Team went to court to see if we could find a story about DUI suspects striking deals. We found that, but not the way we thought we would. We found a program aimed at preventing future drunk driving, by offering defendants treatment instead of punishment. Our two part report is coming up on Tuesday, February 16 and Wednesday, February 17.

Manhunt Monday - Gary Bunn

     Las Vegas Metro Police are looking for Gary Lamont Bunn. He is a black male adult, 41 years age, standing 5'9" tall and weighing approximately 210 lbs. with black hair and green eyes.
     On May 13 , 2009, Metro Police say Bunn became involved in a violent domestic dispute with his live-in girlfriend, who is the mother of his infant child. After spraying the victim in her face with a can of disinfectant cleaner, Bunn Punched her in the face and attempted to strangle her. When officers arrived at the residence, located in the 9600 block of West Russell Road, they discovered Bunn had fled the area in the victims gold 1998 Lexus.
     Because of this crime Gary Lamont Bunn is currently wanted on outstanding warrants for:
  • Battery, domestic violence [misdemeanor], and
  • Domestic battery by strangulation [felony].
     Anyone with any information concerning the whereabouts of Gary Lamont Bunn is urged to contact the L.V.M.P.D. Fugitive Detail at 828-3578 or Crime Stoppers at 385-5555.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Southwest Business Crime Watch Quarterly Meeting

This is a news release CrimeTracker 3 received from Metro Police.

Enterprise Area Command would like to invite business representatives to the Southwest Business Crime Watch Quarterly meeting.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010
11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Orleans Hotel, Conference Area Salon “J”
4500 W. Tropicana

This meeting is an opportunity for businesses in the Southwest to exchange information on criminal and suspicious activity with each other and with law enforcement. It is also an opportunity for business and security personnel to receive free training on crime prevention methods.

This group’s initial goal was to improve security in and around the Tropicana Corridor by reducing business crime through networking business owners, managers, and staff. Since then the membership has grown and expands over the entire Enterprise Area Command jurisdiction.

The Business Crime Watch program offers the opportunity to share information and increase awareness in the business community. It provides an easy way for businesses to report suspicious activity observed by watchful staff and the potential to provide cost-effective solutions on a shared basis.

Attendance is limited to commercial and retail businesses and their security staff. This is free to attend, however a RSVP is required.

For more information, or to sign up, please contact Crime Prevention Specialist Carol Ferranti at 828-5804;

Monday, February 8, 2010

Manhunt Monday - Rasheda Johnson

Metro Police say, in the late afternoon hours of November 2 , 2009, Rasheda Johnson entered a hotel and casino and cashed a counterfeit payroll check which was forged on the business account of a local employer. When the hotel-casino was notified of the crime by the victim, Metro was called. Metro says the investigation revealed Johnson had put her actual name on the forged check, and then used her own identification to pull off the theft.

Rasheda Jenette Johnson is a black female adult, 30 years of age, standing 5'6" tall and weighing approximately 250 lbs. with black hair and brown eyes.
Her last known residence was in the 1200 block of East Hacienda, in the Southeast part of Las Vegas.
As of February 8, 2010, Rasheda Jenette Johnson is wanted on three felony warrants for:
  • Burglary with intent to commit a felony,
  • Forgery, and
  • Felony theft.
Anyone with any information concerning the whereabouts of Rasheda Jenette Johnson is asked to contact the L.V.M.P.D Fugitive Detail at 828-3578 or Crime Stoppers at 385-5555.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Classifieds Crime List Part 2

Critics say Craigslist doesn't do everything it could or should to prevent crimes that are happening through connections made on the site. Friday at 5pm on News 3, you'll hear from Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez-Masto, who says an agreement Craigslist made with Attorneys-General from several states last year is not having all of the desired outcomes. A blogger who specializes in Craigslist crime says the site should entirely close parts of its operation.

If you misssed it, here is part one of our report.

We wanted Craigslist to respond to the critics. We wrote to a "press" email address on the site, and contacted their public relations firm. We wanted to interview someone over the phone. After several attempts, Susan MacTavish Best from Best Public Relations asked CrimeTracker 3 to send an email. Here is the entire email:

Ms. MacTavish Best:

We are still interested in speaking with you via telephone this week, so we can air it with our story. However, if you prefer to answer our questions via email, we are grateful for your time. We are well aware of the posting on Craigslist to help customers avoid scams and trouble when meeting face to face.

Here are some of our questions.

Last year, Craigslist entered into an agreement with the Attorneys General from 38 states to strengthen security measures on the site pertaining to adult and erotic services. What steps has Craigslist taken to that end and are they working?

Critics say the adult erotic services section, and perhaps even the casual encounters section from Craigslist should be taken down altogether. What is the response from Craigslist?

The Nevada Attorney General still feels more needs to be done to protect people, especially children, from gaining access to/falling victim to possible predators in these sections. Can Craigslist do anything more to make sure those posting can be identified?

Ebay tracks users via credit card numbers. Would Craigslist ever consider doing the same? Those who want to post, buy or sell must give valid credit card information so they can be tracked if a crime occurs.

Does Craigslist get too much blame for crimes occurring on online classifieds?

Do any laws need to be changed so Craigslist can help its customers stay safer?

What is Craigslist’s policy when alerted about a crime or potential scam by a customer?

How long can a customer expect to wait to hear back from Craigslist after the company is alerted about a possible crime/scam?

Our story is set to air Thursday, February 4, 2010. Thank you for a prompt reply and I look forward to receiving your answers soon.
After CrimeTracker 3's Sophia Choi sent that email, Susan MacTavish Best replied to an earlier email from producer Eric Wiener:
Hi Eric,

Here's a comment for you:

Use of craigslist in connection with any crime is unwise and quite rare. It virtually guarantees immediate apprehension and prosecution. An electronic trail to the perpetrator is inevitably left behind, and craigslist actively cooperates with law enforcement.

For tips on safety specifically on craigslist, you'll see that we provide warnings on every page. The #1 rule which I urge you to tell your viewers/readers is to ONLY DEAL WITH PEOPLE YOU CAN MEET IN PERSON LOCALLY. Do that and you'll avoid 99% of all scam attempts.


By email, we confirmed that this response would be the only response to our inquiries, and our specific questions would not be specifically answered.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Blog Extra - Classifieds Crime List

Don't forget to watch part one of CrimeTracker 3's investigation into "The Classifieds Crime List" tonight on News 3 at 5. Until then, we have a web extra: some additional safety advice from Metro Lt. Clint Nichols.

Craigslist has it's own safety advice that it offers to all customers. We also asked the company for additional comment for our story, and here's what we received from their public relations firm:

Use of craigslist in connection with any crime is unwise and quite rare. It virtually guarantees immediate apprehension and prosecution. An electronic trail to the perpetrator is inevitably left behind, and craigslist actively cooperates with law enforcement.

For tips on safety specifically on craigslist, you'll see that we provide warnings on every page. The #1 rule which I urge you to tell your viewers/readers is to ONLY DEAL WITH PEOPLE YOU CAN MEET IN PERSON LOCALLY. Do that and you'll avoid 99% of all scam attempts.

Online Classifieds Dangers

Tonight on News 3 at 5, the CrimeTracker 3 team presents "The Classifieds Crime List." A local man shares his story of a deal arranged through online classifieds that turned horribly wrong. We found out what to look for to spot a potentially dangerous deal, and precautions to take when you go to meet someone face-to-face to finish the transaction.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Mesquite PD loooking for "quick change" scammer

Mesquite, NV - The Mesquite Police Department requesting assistance from the public identifying this man pictured above. He is wanted in connection with a series of quick change scams at local casinos in Mesquite during the month of January.

If you know his identity, please contact Detective Celia Hoggard, Mesquite Police Detective Division at (702) 346-8826. Callers can remain anonymous.

Metro recreates crime scene

On December 8 , 2009, a police report was filed with the LVMPD listing Dragan Rnic as a missing person. It is now believed Mr. Rnic may have met with foul play. Metro’s ongoing investigation has determined sometime between the late afternoon of 12/01/2009 and 2:00 p.m. on 12/02/09 the victims vehicle was abandoned on the North side of SR-160 at the approximate 20 mile marker [approximately one mile East of Mountain Springs]. It is believed this area is one of the crime scenes involved in this incident, and that motorists traveling that roadway may have knowledge which will assist in solving the case.

On Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010, at 11:00 a.m. Metro Officers will meet with the media near Mile Marker 20 of SR-160 to discuss certain facts of this case. We will also place an identical van at the site where the victims vehicle was found for the media to photograph. It is hoped viewers who see this story will realize they possess information valuable to this investigation.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Missing Utah man appearing on Las Vegas milk cartons

Steven Koecher was last seen in a neighborhood in Sun City Anthem in Henderson on December 13, 2009. The 30-year old man is from St. George, Utah. Now, thanks to the efforts of Henderson Police and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police, his face will appear on milk cartons from Anderson Dairy for the next several weeks.

Henderson police have recently produced this video about Steven Koecher:

In a release emalied to local media, Koecher's mother Deanne Koecher said “We realize it has been many years since Anderson Dairy last did this, and we greatly appreciate their efforts on our behalf. We are hopeful that residents of the Las Vegas area will take notice of the milk cartons and call the police if they spot someone matching Steven’s description. The phone numbers are right on the carton.”

According to the message from Koecher's family, tips have been called in following recent stories. Employees at a restaurant near Flamingo and the Boulder Highway have reported seeing a person matching his description at least three weeks in a row, prompting this parents and extended family members recently to post a vigil at the restaurant for several nights, but the person did not show up.

“We were just grateful that someone took the time to watch for Steven,” said Deanne Koecher. “Several employees told us they’d seen this individual who looked much like Steven, but key descriptions did not match, and one of them even said she felt the mysterious customer was definitely not Steven. It is our opinion that this person looked much like Steven but that it was not him; however, we greatly appreciate the alertness of all the restaurant employees.”

Steven’s parents and extended family members combed nearby restaurants, stores and casinos while they were in Las Vegas last week, but did not find Steven. They even talked with homeless people at Las Vegas area shelters and at a few informal homeless camps around the area.

They spotted at least two young men who looked like Steven from a distance, but upon closer inspection were able to positively establish it was not their son.

“Which points out to us how difficult spotting a specific person can be, but we welcome any tips and appreciate people for trying to help, said Deanne Koecher. “We’ve even been contacted by a number of psychics with theories about his demise. We usually turn these tips over to the Henderson Police They have actually checked some of them out, but haven’t found Steven where they indicated he’d be. Even so, we are appreciative of all those who are trying to help.”

The effort was touched off after Koecher’s car had been found abandoned for four days in the Sun City Anthem area of Henderson last month. After being notified by Henderson police, Koecher’s parents, who live near Salt Lake City, immediately reported him missing and launched a private search of the neighborhoods near the abandoned vehicle. In late December, a wide air and ground search was launched by Henderson Police in tandem with Las Vegas Metro Police.

Henderson police searched in a wide radius around Sun City Anthem for two days, using police dogs and searchers on all-terrain vehicles to examine culverts, drainage basins, ditches, gullies and other rough terrain. Meanwhile, police and volunteer searchers from the Nevada Center for Missing Loved Ones, combed homes and neighborhoods, and a Las Vegas Metro helicopter searched from the air.

“They conducted an all-out effort to find Steven, but so far there hasn’t been a trace of him,” said Rolf Koecher, Steven’s father. “Surveillance cameras caught Koecher leaving his car right at noon on Sunday, Dec. 13, as if heading to an appointment, but he apparently never returned to his car.

According to the family's news release, those closest to Steven know of no alcohol, drug or similar issues, yet he vanished on a bright Sunday morning in an upscale neighborhood. He is well-liked by his many friends and associates, according to leaders of his LDS church congregation in St. George, who describe him as cheerful, the first to volunteer for service projects and always dependable. In addition, his car contained Christmas gifts for his older brother’s family, which he purchased just the evening before he disappeared.

“All this just deepens the mystery,” said Rolf Koecher. “This is a particularly difficult and confusing situation because many clues indicate he was planning to return to St. George on the day he disappeared, and none of the clues point to any particular motive or conclusion. St. George police even reported that their investigation into Steven revealed he had apparently been acting as a Good Samaritan on the Friday before he disappeared, trying to help locate the parents of two young girls accidentally locked out of their home on a cold afternoon.”

Steven’s mother, meanwhile, has expressed the family’s gratitude for the efforts that have been made to find their missing son.

“We are impressed with the intense effort expended by the Henderson and Las Vegas Metro police in finding our son, especially for the tireless work of Det. Robert McKay and his associates. We are even aware that detectives have done additional searches on their own and that a number of Las Vegas area residents whom we don’t even know have organized spontaneous searches on their own volition, as well,” said Deanne Koecher. “We are grateful that Anderson Dairy has now joined in the effort to help solve this mystery, which is very troubling and painful for us, his siblings and extended family members. We welcome any tips or clues the public may provide.”

Manhunt Monday - Adrian Diagle

On January 27 , 2009, Metro Police say Adrian Scott Diagle drove a stolen Dodge pickup truck to a local title loan business located in the West part of Las Vegas. At some earlier time, police say Diagle was able to obtain a genuine title that was illegal because of the fraudulent methods he used to obtain the title. After presenting that fraudulently obtained title to business employees, he received a loan on the stolen truck.

Because of this criminal activity Diagle is currently wanted for:
  • Burglary,
  • Obtaining money under false pretenses, and
  • Possession of a stolen vehicle.

Diagle is a white male adult, 30 years of age, standing 5'9" tall and weighing approximately 200 lbs. with blonde hair and blue eyes.
Diagle has numerous tattoo’s including:
  • A star bracelet on his left wrist,
  • Two Pyramids with a yellow and red fireball on his left side,
  • A Cat caricature on his right chest, and
  • A zodiac-like symbol surrounded by red and green flames on the back of his neck.
Diagle’s criminal history includes arrests for:
• Possession of drugs for sale in interstate commerce,
• Possession of a stolen vehicle,
• Battery, domestic violence,
• Attempted Murder, and
• Multiple arrests for possession of a controlled substance.
Anyone with any information concerning the whereabouts of Adrian Scott Diagle is urged to call the L.V.M.P.D. Fugitive Detail at 828-3578 or Crime Stoppers at 385-5555.