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MMA fighter accused in death of ex-UNLV football player at Luxor

Updated Monday, June 21, 2010 | 3:43 p.m.

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Jason Sindelar

DeMario Reynolds

DeMario Reynolds

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Map of Luxor Hotel & Casino

Luxor Hotel & Casino

3900 S. Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas

A former UNLV football player was killed in an altercation with a mixed martial arts fighter Saturday at the Luxor resort on the Las Vegas Strip, Metro Police said.

Police arrested Jason Sindelar, 25, in connection with the death of 26-year-old DeMario Reynolds, of Henderson. Jail records indicate Sindelar was booked into the Clark County Detention Center in connection with murder. He is being held without bail.

Metro spokeswoman Barbara Morgan said Sindelar and Reynolds, who police say were friends, got into a fight in a Luxor suite about 4 a.m. Saturday. Sindelar allegedly punched Reynolds in the face and chest, police said.

Sindelar’s only professional fight was a loss to Ryan Burwick on Sept. 7, 2008. Sindelar has an amateur record with four victories, three in 2007 and one in 2008.

According to an arrest report, Sindelar and his girlfriend got into a verbal confrontation during a party at the suite, and Reynolds asked Sindelar to leave because of the disturbance.

Witnesses told police that Sindelar was intoxicated and belligerent. He tried to grab his girlfriend by the throat and slapped her during the confrontation, the report said.

Reynolds tried to calm Sindelar by holding him in a bear hug on the bathroom floor and saying he “didn’t want to fight with him; he loved him,” one witness told police.

Reynolds let go of him and went into the main bedroom, where Sindelar followed and a brief struggle ensued between the two. Punches were thrown but the fight was broken up, police said.

Sindelar then left and Reynolds took a seat on the couch. Witnesses said Reynolds was sweating and out of breath.

Shortly after the altercation, Sindelar came back into the suite and began hitting Reynolds in the chest, the report said. The mixed martial arts fighter pulled Reynolds onto the floor and continued to hit him, authorities said.

The fight was broken up again and security was called after Reynolds became unresponsive, police said.

Reynolds was taken to Desert Springs Hospital, where he died from his injuries. The Clark County Coroner’s Office said the official cause of death hasn’t been determined.

Reynolds was a 2006 graduate of UNLV and had worked at the Cathouse nightclub inside the Luxor.

Sindelar told officers that Reynolds had provoked him by grabbing him by the throat and pulling him out of the room. He said he came back to the room to argue with Reynolds but did not fight with him again.

Police said Sindelar was the primary aggressor because witness statements indicated he came back to the room for a second fight and continued to hit Reynolds after the former football player took a defensive position.

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