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September 1, 2015

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Police allege man shot ex-boyfriend, reloaded, emptied 2nd clip

Updated Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2011 | 2:54 p.m.

Metro Police arrested Tracy Dale Kauffman, 50, Monday afternoon at McCarran International Airport as he was preparing to buy a plane ticket.

Metro Police arrested Tracy Dale Kauffman, 50, Monday afternoon at McCarran International Airport as he was preparing to buy a plane ticket.

The man arrested in the slaying of a bartender Monday shot his ex-boyfriend as he fled then reloaded a semi-automatic pistol and fired 15 more rounds into his body, a Metro Police report says.

The suspect, Tracy Dale Kauffman, 50, told police he brought a handgun to Las Vegas to scare his ex-boyfriend, Phillip Wells, who worked at The Garage, a gay bar at 1487 E. Flamingo Road, the report says.

Kauffman was arrested at 3:25 p.m. Monday at McCarran International Airport, where police said he was buying a ticket to leave town. He was booked at the Clark County Detention Center on counts of murder with a deadly weapon and burglary with a deadly weapon.

In an interview at Metro’s airport bureau, Kauffman, who lives in Knoxville, Tenn., allegedly said he flew to Las Vegas about a week ago because he was angry with Wells, police said.

Kauffman said Wells took advantage of him, the report says. He carried a .40-caliber semi-automatic handgun with him in his luggage, police said.

Kauffman went to the bar shortly before 5:30 a.m. Monday, where Wells was working the graveyard shift, the report says. He began shooting at Wells, who fled to a rear storeroom while two customers escaped out the front door and called police, the report says.

Police said Kauffman fired more shots as he chased Wells to the storeroom, where the bartender fell to the floor, the report says. Kauffman reloaded his gun and fired approximately 15 more shots into Wells’ back and head, police said.

Kauffman told police he then returned to his motel, showered and threw his clothes and gun in a Dumpster, which he watched a garbage truck empty, the report says. He then went to the airport to return to Tennessee.

Kauffman is being held without bail on the murder charge. He is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday morning.

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