Police officers shoot, kill robbery suspect in Laughlin

Las Vegas police shot and killed a man who was suspected of robbing a Laughlin convenience store in Laughlin on Friday night.

Two store employees, who declined to give their names, said it was the third time the man had robbed the store. The two previous incidents occurred last week, they said.

It was Metro’s first officer-related shooting of the year.

The Clark County coroner’s office did not release the suspect’s name, age or residence. Police will release the names of the officers involved within 72 hours of the shooting, following Police Department policy.

Police shot the man outside the South Pointe Market, a gas station and convenience store in the 3600 block of Needles Highway, just moments after he is alleged to have robbed it at gunpoint at 10:58 p.m.

According to Metro’s version of events, aired in a barely audible YouTube video, police received a 911 call about an armed robbery, then confronted a man matching the robber’s description outside of the store.

When officers began “issuing commands” to the suspect, he produced a handgun. The officers felt threatened, then “engaged the suspect in gunfire,” striking him, police said.

“The suspect fell to the ground and officers immediately placed the suspect into custody,” police said in a prepared statement later Saturday.

Medics pronounced him dead a few moments later.

What’s not clear is what responding officers actually said to the suspect before they fired their weapons and whether he said anything back to them or fired at them.

When reached by telephone for more information Saturday, Lt. Ray Steinbeck deferred to the press release and the YouTube video, saying the case was still under investigation and he could not comment.

The store is about five miles west of Laughlin’s downtown resort corridor, next to the Crown Point apartment complex. Laughlin is about 97 miles south of Las Vegas.

One of the employees said the man might have lived in the apartment complex, but a complex manager said she did not know.

The coroner’s office will identify the man in the next couple of days and perform an autopsy to determine the cause of death.

Contact reporter Tom Ragan at tragan@reviewjournal.com or 702-224-5512. Contact reporter Annalise Porter at aporter@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0264.