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Guard told Las Vegas police he shot at man 15 times, report says

Security guard Brian Love admitted that he did not call 911 after shooting at a man 15 times at a business complex, according to his arrest report.

Instead, the report states, the 26-year-old guard climbed back into his SOS Security patrol car, drove away and finished his rounds.

Left for dead, Max Garcia, a father to two young girls, lay in the spot where he had collapsed for more than seven hours before his body was found.

Security footage in the business complex, which helped Las Vegas police identify Love as the suspect, showed Love and Garcia briefly talking before the guard opened fire, but police have said there was no indication that a struggle had occurred.

Garcia had been asleep on the sidewalk just prior to the shooting, which happened around 12:46 a.m. on June 29 at the Shadow Mountain Marketplace, 6475 N. Decatur Blvd.

Love was taken into custody around 5 p.m. at his home and has been held without bail at the Clark County Detention Center awaiting his preliminary hearing, scheduled for Aug. 28. He was formally charged Tuesday with one count of murder with a deadly weapon.

In an interview with homicide detectives following his arrest, Love admitted to shooting Garcia but did not elaborate on what the two spoke about just prior to the shooting, according to the report, which was released Friday to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

According to the report, Love pulled into the business complex at 12:40 a.m., parking his security vehicle near where Garcia had been asleep. Two minutes later, Love is seen in the footage approaching Garcia and waking him up.

About four more minutes go by before Love walks back to his car, pulls out a 9 mm handgun and fires one warning shot into the air, the report states.

Garcia then gets up and starts walking toward the guard, who immediately opens fire, according to the report. Garcia takes a few steps back and then collapses. He was found at 8:03 a.m., dead from multiple gunshot wounds.

Homicide Lt. Ray Spencer confirmed Friday that Love fired 15 rounds but said it was not immediately clear how many times Garcia was struck.

Candlelight vigils were held in the business complex on Monday and Tuesday in Garcia’s honor. By Monday evening, a bouquet of red roses and seven candles had been left in the spot where he died — one for each hour he lay there.

At Monday night’s vigil, Garcia’s 2-year-old daughter, Ripley, held two candles and watched in awe as a crowd of about 100 remembered her dad. His eldest daughter, Kayden, 8, lives out of state.

“He wanted to be everything he could for her,” Ripley’s mother, Alexis Mendoza, said. “She was the light of his life.”

Garcia’s girlfriend, Lexi Gibson, 28, told the Review-Journal that he had left her home two days before the shooting to sleep on the streets, wanting to prove to her that he could make it on his own.

According to Kevin Ingram, executive director of the state Public Investigators Licensing Board, the guard was terminated from SOS Security on the day of the shooting, but his registration with the licensing board remained active as of Friday and will remain so pending a conviction in the case.

“We cannot revoke his card without due process,” Ingram said. “It’s in limbo in the meantime, but if convicted we would take action to revoke his card.”

Love first registered as a security guard in Nevada in November 2012, and his background check did not reveal any red flags, according to Ingram. He said Love also was in good standing at the time of his arrest and was up to date on his firearms qualifications.

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

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