Las Vegas officer shoots, kills suspect while serving search warrant


A Las Vegas police officer fatally shot a man when he made a "furtive movement" toward a detective serving a narcotics search warrant Friday night at an east valley apartment, according to police.

In a statement released Saturday, police did not say whether the suspect was armed. They said the officer who shot the man fired one round.

Homicide Lt. Lew Roberts, whose section is conducting the investigation into the shooting, declined to provide further details.

The shooting occurred at 9 p.m. at the Mirabella Apartments, 2850 E. Bonanza Road, near Eastern Avenue.

Police said narcotics detectives went to the apartment, knocked and announced their presence, but received no response from the occupants. Detectives forcibly entered the apartment and secured the location, taking into custody a pregnant woman who was hiding in a bedroom closet.

Police said detectives then went into a bathroom, at which point the suspect made a move toward one detective, who fired.

The suspect was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.

Authorities did not release the name of the deceased. However, KTNV-TV, Channel 13 identified the dead man as Trevon Cole. His fiancée, Sequoia Pearce, told the TV station that she hid when police were entering, believing that someone was breaking into the apartment, where the couple had lived for only a month.

Pearce said her fiancé, who family members said did not have a criminal record, had used marijuana recreationally but was not a drug dealer. Pearce also said she was nine months pregnant, and that now her baby would be fatherless.

Geoffrey Nielsen, a longtime resident at Mirabella, said he was drinking a beer outside with some friends when he saw police moving toward the apartment.

Nielsen said he saw about eight armed officers, who appeared to be in SWAT gear, moving toward the building next to the one where he was.

A short time later he saw a pregnant woman running out of the apartment. Police told her to get out of the way.

Nobody was home at the apartment Saturday afternoon. Shattered glass covered the ground outside the apartment, whose door and windows were boarded up.

Nielsen said he only knew the deceased casually, but would not have imagined that he would be involved in drugs.

"He was always a real nice guy," Nielsen said.

The name of the officer who fired will be released 48 hours after the incident, in accordance with department policy. The officer will be placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of a coroner's inquest.

During the inquest, a jury will determine whether the officer's actions were justified, excusable or criminal.

Contact reporter Antonio Planas at aplanas @reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4638.

 

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