Clark County DA details decision to throw out murder case

Updated December 26, 2017 - 6:53 pm

The Clark County district attorney’s office on Tuesday released a timeline detailing its decision to throw out a murder case against Christine Sanchez — the same woman now accused of killing her three roommates.

Bonnie Marie Rice was found dead inside her North Las Vegas apartment on Sept. 13, 2014. Five days later, Sanchez was arrested and booked into the Las Vegas City Jail.

District Attorney Steve Wolfson on Tuesday told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that his office charged Sanchez in October 2014 with one count of murder with a deadly weapon based on evidence and presumptive forensic tests. But weeks later, Sanchez, accused of stabbing and shooting Rice multiple times, was released from custody “pending further investigation” after Wolfson said blood tests failed to link her to the slaying.

It would be nine more months — July 2015 — before Sanchez’s indictment, which came after witnesses in February 2015 came forward with information on Rice’s death.

In the timeline released to the Review-Journal, Wolfson did not detail any possible negotiations between the state and Sanchez. But in a Facebook post on Sept. 16, 2016, the 47-year-old woman wrote, “It’s official I’m not taking a deal so trial is January 23rd 1 o’clock.”

Court records show the Jan. 23, 2017, jury trial was canceled for reasons that remained unclear Tuesday.

After more than two years of negotiations and at least one failed attempt at a deal, the state voluntarily dismissed the case on June 14 because, according to Wolfson, further investigation failed to develop any additional evidence.

“After a complete review of all the available evidence, the district attorney’s office did not believe there was sufficient evidence to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt,” Wolfson said. “As such, consistent with our obligation, we chose to dismiss the case voluntarily in June 2017.”

When asked on Tuesday whether Wolfson stood by his office’s decision to throw out Sanchez’s murder charge, the district attorney did not respond.

On Saturday, the recently cleared murder suspect was booked and charged with three counts of murder with a deadly weapon after her three roommates were found dead Friday afternoon from multiple gunshot wounds inside the eastern valley home they shared.

One of her roommates, identified by the Clark County coroner as 43-year-old Natasha Henry, was found dead inside a bedroom at the 4323 Del Santos Drive home. Her death was ruled a homicide. The identities of the other two victims, who police said were found in another bedroom, remain pending with the coroner’s office.

As of Tuesday, the lead attorney representing the state of Nevada in the triple homicide case had not yet been listed in court records. But Robert Langford, Sanchez’s attorney in the 2014 case, confirmed that he will again represent Sanchez. Langford declined to comment further Tuesday.

Sanchez is being held at the Clark County Detention Center without bail. She is due in court Wednesday morning.

Contact Rio Lacanlale at rlacanlale@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0381. Follow @riolacanlale on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Local
Nonprofit provides clothing for homeless
Sydney Grover of Can You Spare A Story?, talks about how she founded the non-profit organization. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Family remembers deceased mother
Family members of Adriann Gallegos remember her. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Camp Broadway teaches kids how to sing and dance
The Smith Center's seventh annual Camp Broadway musical theater program gives 150 kids ages 6-17 an opportunity to learn musical theater skills from industry professionals over a five-day period. Marcus Villagran/ Las Vegas Review-Journal @brokejournalist
Restoring classic Corvettes to perfection
Members of the National Corvette Restorers Society Convention talk about what it takes to earn the NCRS Top Flight Award for a restored Corvette at South Point in Las Vegas on Tuesday July 17, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Watch Ruthless! at Las Vegas Little Theatre
The musical Ruthless! will be playing at Las Vegas Little Theatre from July 13-29. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Cadaver art and sword swallowing at The Dark Arts Market
Curator Erin Emrie talks about her inspiration for The Dark Arts Market at Cornish Pasty Co. in Las Vegas Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
'NO H8' Campaign comes to Las Vegas
Hundreds of locals participate in the NO H8 campaign founded by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley as a response to Proposition 8, a California ban on same-sex marriage. The campaign has since evolved to represent equal treatment for all. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
What to expect at Station Casinos' Fourth of July celebration
Station Casinos' is hosting its annual 4th of July celebration with Fireworks by Grucci. Fireworks scheduled to go off on Wednesday, July 4 around 9 p.m. at Green Valley Ranch Resort, Red Rock Resort, Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Star Wars and Golden Knights mashup at downtown art shop
Star Wars and Vegas Golden Knights fans attend the Boba Fett Golden Knight Paint Class at The Bubblegum Gallery in Las Vegas, Friday, June 29, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Tourists and locals enjoy Independence Day fireworks at Caesars Palace
Hundreds of tourists and locals gaze at the Independence Day fireworks show at Caesars Palace on Saturday, June 30, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Clark County recount votes in commission’s District E primary
Clark County staff begin the recount requested by candidate Marco Hernandez in the democratic primary for the County Commission's District E seat on Tuesday, June 26, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Long-running local hip hop producer wants Vegas rappers to shine
Las Vegas Hip Hop producer and co-owner of Digital Insight Recording Studios Tiger Stylz reflects on 30 years of music production in the city. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
"Pawn Stars" fans visit Richard Harrison's memorial at Gold & Silver Pawn
"Pawn Stars" fans from around the world visit the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas following the passing of Richard "Old Man" Harrison on Monday, June 25, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Construction for new 51s ballpark underway
New home of the Las Vegas 51s is planned to be finished by March 2019 in Summerlin according to team president Don Logan. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Underground home was built as Cold War-era hideaway
The underground house at 3970 Spencer Street is one of the valley’s most unusual homes built 26 feet underground in 1978 by Girard “Jerry” B. Henderson, who, planned to survive the end of the world there.
Crime
Nye County detectives pursue suspects
A swarm of Nye County deputies, at the request of Las Vegas police, surrounded a hotel room in Pahrump last week to take two fugitives into custody. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
Las Vegas judge’s ruling will halt tonight’s execution
On Wednesday Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez issued a ruling that will halt the execution of convicted murderer Scott Dozier. Alvogen Inc., which makes the sedative midazolam, filed a lawsuit Tuesday accusing the Nevada Department of Corrections of surreptitiously obtaining the drug for use in an execution.
3 people shot in southeast Las Vegas
Three men were shot Thursday night in southeast Las Vegas, and two of them have life threatening injuries. Las Vegas police responded to the incident just after 10 p.m. on the 5000 block of Mountain Vista Street. The investigation is in its early stages and police were unable to describe the suspect or say how man people they think were involved. Police encourage anyone with information regarding this shooting to call Crime Stoppers at 702-385-5555, or 3-1-1
Robbery suspects apprehended
Four robbery suspects were taken into custody Thursday morning after a vehicle and foot chase that ended in an east Las Vegas neighborhood. The incident began when a person was robbed at gunpoint around 4:45 a.m. near Maryland Parkway and Desert Inn. Officers arriving at the scene tried to stop two vehicles. One vehicle escaped but police chased the second into a neighborhood on Flamingo Road near Mountain Vista Street. Police surrounded the neighborhood and the suspects were apprehended. It looked like one police vehicle was involved in a collision with the suspects' car. One woman suffered an unknown injury and was taken to the hospital in an ambulance. 01:04
Las Vegas police looking for robbery suspects
Two robbers who recently targeted three Las Vegas businesses remained at large Tuesday and police are asking the public to help identify them. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Metro Capt. Jaime Prosser gives update of officer-involved shooting
Metro Capt. Jaime Prosser provides an update about an officer-involved shooting at Radwick Drive and Owens Avenue in the northeast Las Vegas on Thursday. A robbery suspect was shot and killed. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
LVMPD Looking For Robbery Suspect
The LVMPD Commercial Robbery Section is attempting to identify the pictured suspect who is responsible for committing robberies to businesses in the southern part of the Las Vegas Valley during the month of May 2018. The suspect enters the business, threatens the employee with a firearm and demands money from the register. The employee complies and the suspect flees the business.
North Las Vegas police are investigating a triple shooting that left one man dead
North Las Vegas police are investigating a triple shooting that left one man dead at 2500 block of Ellis St., on Friday, June 8, 2018. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like