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October 24, 2014

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More details emerge in wedding reception shooting as case heads to trial

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Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

Carole Cotero, mother of shooting victim Dominick Manzo, testifies during the preliminary hearing for Peter Andrade Jr. on attempted murder and other charges Tuesday, April 1, 2014.

Wedding Shooting Preliminary Hearing

Peter Andrade Jr. smiles before his preliminary hearing on attempted murder and other charges Tuesday, April 1, 2014. Launch slideshow »

Sitting on the witness stand, Carole Cotero saw the man authorities say pumped 10 bullets into her son during a February wedding reception for the first time.

His name, however, was familiar.

Cotero told the court her son Dominick Manzo had mentioned having “bad vibes with Peter” months before attending the Valentine’s Day weekend nuptials.

Peter Andrade Jr. is accused of shooting five people at the wedding, including Manzo, who remains in critical condition. Cotero testified her son’s heart had stopped three times and that for the first two weeks of his hospitalization his kidneys didn’t work.

After hearing testimony from several wounded wedding guests today, Las Vegas Township Judge Diana Sullivan found enough evidence to send Peter Andrade Jr., 24, to trial.

The firing fracas began with a confrontation in a banquet hall bathroom, according to a Metro Police report.

The groom, Christian Flores, recalled seeing Manzo dart from the bathroom, hollering that he had been shot. Andrade followed and tried to flee, indicating the shooter was still in the bathroom, Flores testified.

In the midst of the melee, the groom tackled Andrade.

“Thinking about the other people that were there — children, elderly people, family, a wedding you know what I mean?” Flores said. “Keeping that in mind, not wanting anyone else to be shot, I chased Peter and that’s when I jumped on him.”

Other guests helped and after someone detained Andrade, Flores noticed he had been shot in the armpit and ankle, he said.

“This defendant repeatedly pulled out his gun and was shooting at people even after people were on top of him — he’s shooting and people who are walking by happen to get shot by him,” prosecutor Danielle Pieper argued to the judge. “The defendant continued to keep pulling the trigger, time and time again.”

A Clark County District Court arraignment is set for April 10.

Andrade reportedly said he had gone into the restroom during the party and was hit from behind in the head. He heard three gunshots and then ran, the Metro Police report said. That’s when a crowd of people attacked him, he said, and then he heard several more gunshots.

Andrade, a convicted felon, told police he had become a member of Nevada Trece prison gang while serving in Nevada State Prison. Members of his girlfriend’s family — who also were at the reception — were from the rival 28th Street Gang, causing bad blood between them, the report said.

Andrade’s attorney Lance Hendron said the case was in the early stages and his client would have his day in court.

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