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November 24, 2014

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The Sun’s May 9: Highlighting last month’s top crimes in Las Vegas

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Metro Police

The Sun’s May Nine.

Family tragedies took center stage last month in the Las Vegas Valley.

According to Metro Police, a stressed mother allegedly confessed to police that she’d shot her 11-year-old son in the head, critically wounding him; a 15-year-old allegedly shot and killed his 18-year-old older brother in front of the boys’ mother; and a man turned himself into police, reportedly confessing to accidentally shooting and killing his brother-in-law.

Here’s a look at nine criminal cases from May that caught the public’s attention:

    • Turner Craig Bronson

      Wendy Bronson watched her 15-year-old son shoot his 18-year-old brother in the head, killing him, according to a Metro Police report.

      Turner Bronson

      Turner Bronson

      Turner Craig Bronson, 15, Las Vegas, is charged as an adult, facing one count of first-degree murder, for which he could spend the rest of his life in prison.

      A Metro report outlined details about the May 22 slaying:

      The boys’ mother was resting in her room when she heard her sons bickering. It was a familiar sound.

      The gunshot was not.

      Wendy Bronson went into the hallway and saw her older son, Clayton, clutching his stomach. He said his brother had shot him.

      Wendy Bronson called 911, then waited with her wounded son in the dining room. Turner returned, walked up to Clayton and shot him in the head in front of their mother.

      Earlier in the day, Wendy Bronson had told Turner he was being sent to a 45-day wilderness camp in Texas. Turner told his mother he didn’t want to go. Later, the two brothers got into another fight, this when Turner said he was going to his girlfriend’s home, and Clayton reminded him that he wasn’t allowed.

      A fight ensued. Thinking she’d broken up the fight, Wendy Bronson went to her room, when the boys reignited their fight.

      Turner remains in Clark County Detention Center without bail.

      He is due in Las Vegas Township Justice Court for a preliminary hearing on June 23.

    • Shavon Aguilar, aka Shavon Carrillo

      An out-of-work mother, who was reeling from a breakup, wrestled with whether to kill herself and her three children in the early hours of Memorial Day, according to a Metro Police report.

      Shavon Aguilar, also known as Shavon Carrillo

      Shavon Aguilar, also known as Shavon Carrillo

      Shavon Jacklein Carrillo, also known as Shavon Aguilar, 31, ended up putting a bullet in her 11-year-old son’s head on the holiday before someone intervened, the report said.

      Now her injured son is clinging to life at University Medical Center, according to prosecutors, while she is behind bars on a $1 million bail.

      The arrest report, which outlines the following details, suggests Carrillo’s other children may have also narrowly escaped:

      Carrillo, Las Vegas, had loaded another cartridge into the 22-caliber rifle after wounding her son when another adult in the residence confronted Carillo and wrestled the gun away.

      She told police she’d wanted to put her 11-year-old son, 9-year-old daughter and 2-year-old daughter in a “better place.”

      She also told police her son was picked on by other family members and her husband of 12 years, with whom she’d recently split, would take care of her daughters.

      She whispered, “I love you” to her son.

      Carillo is charged with one count of attempted murder and three counts of child abuse, neglect or endangerment.

      She is due in Las Vegas Township Justice Court on June 13 for a preliminary hearing.

    • Elekaua Brown

      Police say Elekaua Brown, 31, followed up a deadly shooting on May 20 with a run to Jack in the Box, tossing the weapon used out the car window en route to the fast food joint.

      Elekaua Brown

      Elekaua Brown

      Officers responded at 12:28 a.m. to the Sonoma Hills apartments in the 5100 block of East Tropicana, where they found a father dragging his adult son, who was suffering from gunshot wounds.

      The son, Christopher Lamar Randle Jr., was transported to Sunrise Hospital, where he died.

      Christopher Lamar Randle Sr. told officers he had noticed a group of people in the apartment complex parking lot while walking home from a Circle K. When he got home, he noticed his son was missing. Shortly after, he heard gunshots.

      When he went to investigate, he found his son wounded where the group had been.

      A witness told homicide detectives the father, armed, had been arguing with a man named Seth Aulai, 28, when Brown walked up and shot the son, who was unarmed and standing next to his father.

      A detective recognized the description of the shooter as someone he’d spoken to in one of the apartments. The detective went back to Brown, who agreed to speak with detectives, noting he hadn’t been involved in the shooting.

      Under questioning, however, Brown told detectives he, Aulai and a third person believed they were going to fist-fight the Randles and a third man. Brown said when he approached the Randleses, the father pulled out a gun and aimed it at Aulai. At that point Brown drew his 9-mm pistol and fired three times until his gun jammed, he said. Brown said that while he was trying to clear his gun the father fired at him, but missed.

      After the shooting, Brown, Aulai and a third man got into Aulai’s car and ditched the pistol on the way to Jack in the Box, Brown told police.

      Aulai told detectives he had been fighting with the Randleses when another man became involved. At that point the father drew his weapon and Aulai fled at the sound of gunshots, Aulai said.

      Brown is charged with open murder with a deadly weapon. He is due in Las Vegas Township Justice Court on June 11 for a preliminary hearing.

      He remains in Clark County Detention Center without bail, according to jail records.

    • Jim Johnson

      The plan the night of May 15 had been to film a rap video. Instead of shooting a video, Evan Plunkett, an aspiring rapper, was shot dead in a suite at the Palms. Two days later Jim Johnson, 25, turned himself in to police. One of Johnson’s friends reportedly told police Johnson described the shooting as an accident.

      Jim Edward Johnson

      Jim Edward Johnson

      A Metro report provided details:

      A group of about 50 people had gathered in the Hugh Hefner suite in the off-Strip resort’s Fantasy Tower for a private party to film a music video.

      Witnesses said just before 9:30 p.m. a fight broke out on the patio near the pool between Plunkett, his brother, Thomas Plunkett, and a man named Richard Moore.

      Thomas Plunkett said he was fighting with Moore when he heard the shot. He didn’t see who fired but said he saw his brother on the ground, bleeding.

      Evan Plunkett was a former Marine and an aspiring rapper who went by the name “Hollywood Will.”

      Johnson is charged with one count of open murder.

      He is due July 1 in Las Vegas Township Justice Court for a preliminary hearing and remains in Clark County Detention Center on a $100,000 bail.

    • Alfonso Montellano

      It wasn’t the Donut Hut’s first run-in with a robber.

      Alfonso Montellano

      Alfonso Montellano

      After the first robbery at the shop, a concerned customer took shop owner Sothy Seang to a gun show at Cashman Field, where he bought a pistol.

      Seang, a combat veteran who as a teenager in the 1970s joined the Cambodian army, scared off the next set of thieves — three masked men — with one gunshot to the wall.

      On May 14, a man trying to rob the shop left with a bullet wound, according to a Metro Police arrest report, which outlines the following details:

      Seang was in the back of his shop, 3242 E. Desert Inn Road, when his girlfriend, Peou Sorn, who works there, called for him.

      A man with a bandana covering his face had jumped the counter. He wanted money and he’d indicated to Sorn that he was armed.

      Customers told officers the man also demanded money from them and that they heard him say he’d shoot if he didn’t get cash.

      Seang, midskirmish with the thief, told his girlfriend in his native language Khmer to grab the gun.

      She snatched a 9 mm pistol and aimed it at the intruder. The man tried to take the gun, and amid the struggle, a single shot was fired.

      The man fled. The couple believed the robber had been shot, but they weren’t certain.

      Police arrested Alfonso Montellano, 32, after he went to University Medical Center with a gunshot wound to his hip and a suspicious story.

      Initially, Montellano told detectives he’d been at his ex-girlfriend’s house when her new boyfriend arrived. Montellano said he jumped out the window, hopped in his truck, realized he’d been shot and drove to UMC.

      Pressed further, Montellano told detectives he went to the doughnut store unarmed because he needed money. A man came from the back of the store and pulled a gun on him, so he turned around to leave and was shot, Montellano told detectives.

      Montellano is charged with one count of burglary while in possession of a gun/deadly weapon, three counts of attempted robbery with a gun/deadly weapon and one count of robbery with a deadly weapon. He is due June 2 in Las Vegas Township Justice Court for a preliminary hearing.

      Montellano remains in Clark County Detention Center on $180,000 bail.

    • Edward Barber

      Police say a man fled a fatal traffic accident May 7 only to surrender the next day.

      Edward Barber

      Edward Barber

      Edward Barber, 49, turned himself in just after 12:30 p.m. May 8.

      Barber is charged with duty to stop at an accident.

      A motorist – ostensibly Barber – was driving a GMC Yukon on Charleston Boulevard about 6:30 p.m. May 7 when he collided with an oncoming Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera, according to Metro.

      The Oldsmobile ran onto a sidewalk and slammed into the wall of the nearby Flex Cocktail Lounge, police said. The GMC hit a minivan that was stopped on Arville, pushing it into another vehicle, police said.

      The driver of the GMC stopped to talk with the Oldsmobile’s driver and then walked into Flex, police said. Witnesses reported he slipped out the back door and ran away, police said.

      A 75-year-old passenger in the Oldsmobile was rushed to University Medical Center, where she died from injuries suffered in the crash, police said.

      Barber’s preliminary hearing is scheduled June 10 in Las Vegas Township Justice Court. He remains in Clark County Detention Center on a $100,000 bail.

    • Javier Gonzalez-Valencia

      A concerned neighbor fired multiple rounds at an erratic driver after the driver struck a 12-year-old boy riding a bike early last month, according to Metro Police.

      Javier Gonzalez

      Javier Gonzalez

      Just before 9 p.m. May 2, a Nissan Titan was driving south on Joyful Street, near East Lake Mead Boulevard and North Pecos Road, and swerving into parked cars on the west side of the street, witnesses told police.

      According to a Metro arrest report, the driver, Javier Gonzalez-Valencia, 25, then struck the boy on the bike, knocking him to the ground. After hitting two more parked cars, the Nissan made a U-turn, according to the report.

      Lt. Roger Price said the driver started to leave but then came back. It was at that point that the neighbor, fearing for the safety of the injured boy and other children, fired multiple times, Price said.

      The shots didn’t hit anyone, Price said.

      The child was taken to University Medical Center with injuries that were not life-threatening, Price said.

      Police found the Nissan abandoned nearby. Officers located Gonzalez-Valencia a short time later at his home.

      Gonzalez-Valencia is charged with driving under the influence and duty to stop at an accident.

    • Steven Woodard

      In separate incidents that occurred within hours of each other, Steven Dale Woodard slashed the throats of his grandfather and father, according to Metro Police. The attacks left the grandfather, Richard Hill, dead and sent the father, Jerry Woodard, to the hospital for treatment.

      Steven Woodard

      Steven Woodard

      A Metro Police report gives these details in the incidents:

      Steven Woodard, 43, arrived at his father’s home about 1:30 a.m. May 6 and asked to use the bathroom. After being let in, Steven Woodard accused his father of trying to kill his children, then cut his father’s throat with a box cutter. Jerry Woodard hollered for his roommate, who was watching television, to call the police. Steven Woodard then cut the roommate’s neck, too.

      Jerry Woodard was hospitalized; the roommate’s wound was superficial. Steven Woodard went missing.

      Later that morning, Steven Woodard’s grandfather was found dead in his home. A man in a casita on Richard Hill’s property told police he had told Steven Woodard to leave after finding him in the backyard.

      Police eventually found Steven Woodard later that day asleep in the backyard of a vacant house near his father’s place.

      Woodard insisted insisted to detectives that his father and grandfather were uninjured and he hadn’t attacked them. He also told police he heard voices and was “the devil.”

      During the interview Woodard tried to blot out blood stains on his clothing with his saliva.

      Woodard is charged with one count of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder with a deadly weapon. He remains in Clark County Detention Center without bail.

      His arraignment in Las Vegas Township Justice Court is scheduled June 9.

    • Charles Redd Jr.

      A man is charged with murder in the death of his brother-in-law after what police report described as a family feud that turned fatal.

      Charles Redd Jr.

      Charles Redd Jr.

      The Metro Police report outlines the following:

      On May 1, Tony Newberry, 48, got into an argument with his brother-in-law, Charles Albert Redd Jr., 35, at an apartment on Cobb Lane. The two argued over how Redd and his wife, Newberry’s sister, cared for Newberry’s mother and how Newberry was mistreating Redd’s son.

      At one point in the argument, Redd picked up a handgun and said something to the effect of “if you want to take care of business, here you go.”

      The two were separated, and Redd left the apartment. Ten minutes later, Newberry also left.

      Within minutes, the two met up near Owens and Eastern Avenue, and the argument renewed.

      A witness told police he saw the men fighting and turned to toss out the trash when he heard a shot ring out. When the witness turned around, Newberry was on the ground. Redd was nowhere to be seen.

      Redd turned himself into police the next day and said the shooting was an accident. He told police he fled because, as a convicted felon, he didn’t want to be caught with the gun.

      Redd told police that when he and Newberry fought in the street, he again tried to give the gun to Newberry but it inadvertently fired as the muzzle swept across Newberry’s body.

      Redd is charged with one count of open murder with a deadly weapon and one count of owning or possessing a gun by a prohibited person.

      His arraignment in Clark County District Court is scheduled for Thursday.

      He remains in Clark County Detention Center on a $200,000 bail.

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