91°F
weather icon Clear

3 homicides investigated by Las Vegas police unpublicized in 2020

Updated July 11, 2020 - 4:15 pm

Three homicides investigated by the Metropolitan Police Department this year have gone unpublicized: the fatal stabbing of a 53-year-old, the body of a 52-year-old found in a desert lot, and the killing of a 50-year-old that police said was self-defense.

Two of the cases are being counted in the department’s official homicide tally, while the self-defense case is counted by the department as a “justifiable homicide” and is not included in the total, according to homicide Lt. Ray Spencer.

The department, which also does not include police killings in its official homicide total, recorded 38 killings during the first six months of 2020, one fewer than the number Metro recorded during the same time last year. The Review-Journal, which includes self-defense homicides and police killings that are ruled homicides by the Clark County coroner’s office, counted 61 homicides investigated by Metro from January to June, nine more than the newspaper recorded in the first half of 2019.

March 28

The first of the three unreported homicides happened March 28, Spencer said in an email Tuesday. Officers were called to a report of a family disturbance about 11:50 p.m. to a home on the 3700 block of Bonanza Road, east of Pecos Road, according to police dispatch logs.

Spencer said police were called after a man was “battering his girlfriend,” and another family member intervened and put the man in a chokehold.

The man, identified by the coroner’s office as Leroy Tupulua, 50, died at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center. His death was ruled a homicide due to methamphetamine and ethanol intoxication, with other significant conditions of positional asphyxia with blunt force injuries, and heart disease, the coroner’s office said.

The case is being reviewed by the Clark County district attorney’s office for possible self-defense, Spencer said.

May 28

Just after midnight on May 28, police received a report of a bleeding man near the Harbor Island Apartments, 370 E. Harmon Ave. The man told police that his girlfriend of 10 years stabbed him in the leg in their tent, where the two were staying in a drainage tunnel near the apartments, according to an arrest report.

Police followed bloody footprints into the tunnel, where they found 42-year-old Cara Halpin sleeping near a tent. When Halpin stood up, a folding knife fell from her lap, and she had blood on her pajama pants, the report said.

Halpin told police that her boyfriend was punching her, then “changed her story” and said he shoved her. Medical staff did not find any injuries “consistent with what she had told officers at the scene,” the report said.

“As we were leaving the hospital room, Halpin told (a detective) ‘I was just trying to get him away from me.’ ”

Halpin’s boyfriend, identified by the Clark County coroner’s office as Wesley Dardenne, 53, was hospitalized in critical condition. He died at a rehabilitation center on June 6, nine days after he was allegedly stabbed, the coroner’s office said.

The coroner’s office had not determined Dardenne’s cause and manner of death as of Friday.

Halpin has been charged with murder and domestic battery with a deadly weapon resulting in significant bodily harm. She remained in the Clark County Detention Center on Wednesday with $5,000 bail, and a preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for Aug. 18, court records show.

May 31

The final unpublicized homicide happened May 31, when police were called about 10:50 a.m. to a desert lot at Searles Avenue and 23rd Street, near Eastern and Washington avenues, according to Metro dispatch logs. When officers arrived, they found a man’s body in a desert lot, Spencer said.

He was identified by the Clark County coroner’s office as Mahadi Alrekaby, 52. His death was ruled a homicide due to head and neck trauma, the coroner’s office said.

Police had not arrested anyone in Alrekaby’s killing as of Thursday. During an interview on Tuesday, Spencer said Alrekaby was probably killed during a fight.

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Crime Videos
Senior citizen randomly attacked - Video
Las Vegas police detectives are asking for the public’s assistance to identify a suspect who walked up to a senior citizen and punched him in the head. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Bail set at $50K for Alpine Motel owner - Video
A judge set bail at $50,000 for Adolfo Orozco, the landlord of a downtown Las Vegas apartment building where six people died in a fire in December and ordered him to contract with a licensed management company for his other properties. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police discuss violent incidents at short-term rentals in recent weeks - VIDEO
Capt. Reggie Rader from the Southeast Area Command spoke on the current trend of violent incidents that have occurred in recent weeks at short-term rental properties. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Defendants in deadly Alpine Motel fire appear in court - Video
Adolfo Orozco, the landlord of the Alpine Motel apartment building where six people died in a December fire, and Malinda Mier, who has claimed co-ownership, appeared in court Monday to face manslaughter charges. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Man shot by Henderson police expected to survive - Video
Two Henderson police officers shot a man early Saturday, Aug. 1, 2020, in a residential area. Officers were first called to report of a man lying in front of a home. He had a knife when police arrived, Henderson Police Department Lt. Kirk Moore said. (Katelyn Newberg/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
One dead after road rage incident in northeast Las Vegas - Video
Las Vegas police are investigating a shooting that left one dead and one hospitalized after a road rage incident near Pecos Road and Las Vegas Boulevard North in the northeast valley on Saturday, Aug. 1 (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Police investigate homicide.
Detectives were investigating a homicide in southwest Las Vegas on Friday morning. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police surround home with armed resident inside - Video
An armed man was barricaded in a west Las Vegas Valley residence Thursday morning, prompting police to evacuate several nearby homes. (Glen Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Double homicide near Eastern Avenue - Video
Metro homicide Sgt. Jon Scott gives details about a double homicide on East McWilliams Avenue near North Eastern Avenue on Wednesday, July 29, 2020. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Stabbing in east Las Vegas - Video
Metro homicide Sgt. Jon Scott gives an update on a fatal stabbing in east Las Vegas on Wednesday, July 29, 2020. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Carjackings result in crash - Video
Two suspects are in custody after multiple carjackings led to a crash Monday in northeast Las Vegas, police said. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Texas man accused of going on $56,886 spending spree on Las Vegas Strip - Video
Williamson Little, 36, of Dallas, was arrested Saturday, July 18, by Las Vegas police. The arrest report says Little checked into Wynn Las Vegas on June 29. He was booked on suspicion of theft, obtaining credit card without cardholder’s consent and burglary of a business. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Lawyer questions mental health of man charged in ‘thrill killing’ - Video
Noah Green, who faces one count each of murder with a deadly weapon and attempted murder with a deadly weapon, was quarantined at the Clark County Detention Center and did not appear for a court hearing on Wednesday. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Police Announce Arrest of "Thrill Killing" - Video
LVMPD announced the arrest of a suspect in the “thrill killing” of a homeless man who was fatally shot last week.
Bail set for parents charged with murder in crash that killed their 1-year-old son - Video
Lauren Prescia and Cameron Hubbard-Jones, the Las Vegas parents accused of street racing in a crash that killed their 1-year-old son on July12, now each face a charge of second-degree murder. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MS-13 gang case defendant is Las Vegas restaurant employee - VIDEO
An employee at Hugo's Cellar at the Four Queens in Las Vegas is a defendant in the MS-13 gang case.
Las Vegas police investigate homicide in southwest valley - Video
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Homicide Lt. Ray Spencer gives an update on a homicide at a home in the 8400 block of Blackstone Ridge Court in Las Vegas. (Erik Verduzco/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Police: Mom Arrested in Fatal Crash Drove 121 MPH - VIDEO
A 23-year-old woman arrested Sunday night after a crash that killed her 1-year-old son was driving 121 mph at the time of the collision, according to a Las Vegas police report. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police investigate homicide - Video
The Metropolitan Police Department is investigating a homicide at West Decatur Boulevard and Pennwood Avenue on Monday, July 13, 2020, in Las Vegas. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Arrests Made In Murder Investigation
Nickolas Vonalst, Monika Gonzalez, and a juvenile were arrested following a murder investigation that began on June 23rd, 2020. (Nye County Sheriff's Office/YouTube)
The Metropolitan Police Department is investigating a homicide
The Metropolitan Police Department is investigating a homicide at the area of East Flamingo Road and Palos Verde Street on Tuesday, June 30, 2020, in Las Vegas. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Police investigate officer-involved shooting in northern Las Vegas - Video
An individual who police say was brandishing a sword was shot and injured by Las Vegas police, prompting a barricade situation in the central Las Vegas Valley on Monday, June 23. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Woman steals truck, fires at officer - Video
Shanita Hearns, 34, of Las Vegas shot at Henderson Police officers after stealing a truck from a gas station at Horizon Drive and Horizon Ridge Parkway in Henderson on May 31. She was eventually arrested near Tropicana Avenue and Decatur Boulevard after Nevada Highway Patrol officers jumped a median to ram into the side of the truck. (Henderson Police Department)
Mobbed Up - Part Five teaser
A look at some of the interesting reminders of a mob life in the home of Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal, featured on the fifth episode of the Mobbed Up podcast. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Shootings during Las Vegas protest leave 1 dead, officer in critical condition
A Las Vegas police officer was shot and critically injured Monday night. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police briefing on shooting during Black Lives Matter protest
Sheriff Joe Lombardo briefs the media on shootings during the Black Lives Matter protest that left one man dead and a Metro officer in critical condition on Monday, June 1, 2020.
Customer reacts to store looting
Longtime customer Najja Hashim talks about the looting of a neighborhood convenience store. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Search continues for homicide suspects - Video
In October 2017, 62-year-old David Rathbun was reported missing by family members and later found deceased in Arizona. The Las Vegas police homicide section is asking for the public’s assistance in locating 55-year-old Charles Ausiello and 45-year-old Jolene Hibbs who are suspects in Rathbun’s death. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Two men were stabbed Thursday morning at a central Las Vegas home - Video
Two men were stabbed at a central Las Vegas home, Thursday morning, May 21, leaving both with life-threatening injuries. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
THE LATEST