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Man found guilty in Nye County torture killing case

A Pahrump jury found a man guilty of first-degree murder and kidnapping charges Tuesday for his role in torturing and fatally shooting a man in the Nye County desert nearly two years ago.

Brad Mehn, 39, was on trial for the killing of 27-year-old Roy Jaggers, whose body was found on Aug. 1, 2021, at the bottom of Cathedral Canyon, a former desert roadside attraction about 60 miles from Las Vegas. Mehn was accused of torturing Jaggers with Mehn’s ex-girlfriend, Heather Pate, and her current boyfriend, Kevin Dent.

After less than two hours of deliberations on Tuesday, the jury found Mehn guilty of first-degree murder with a deadly weapon and kidnapping with a deadly weapon, according to Nye County District Attorney Brian Kunzi. Last month, Dent and Pate both pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, and Pate also pleaded guilty to a kidnapping charge.

“We have now obtained murder convictions for the three individuals involved in this heinous crime, who are all facing lengthy prison terms,” Kunzi said in an emailed statement.

The day before Jaggers’ body was found, according to prosecutors, Pate and Dent lured him to Pate’s Las Vegas apartment and beat him. Pate then called Mehn, who told her to bring Jaggers to where he lived in Nye County, prosecutors said during the trial’s closing arguments Monday.

Mehn met up with Dent and Pate at a gun range near Pahrump, where the three were accused of torturing Jaggers for hours. Prosecutors accused Mehn of deliberately bringing the tools and weapons used to torture Jaggers, including a belt, baton, bayonet, stapler, pistol, axe, blowtorch and shotgun.

The three then took Jaggers to Cathedral Canyon, where Jaggers was stripped of his clothes, forced to walk off a cliff and was shot multiple times. Prosecutors said Mehn shot and killed Jaggers, although Mehn testified that Pate grabbed the shotgun and “took the kill shots,” defense attorney Thomas Gibson argued Monday.

Gibson declined to comment on the verdict on Tuesday.

Pate and Dent were accused of luring Jaggers into the Las Vegas apartment because they believes Jaggers had done something to one of Pate’s children, the Nye County sheriff’s office has said.

Jaggers was Pate’s neighbor who frequently watched her children, his mother, Kassy Robinson has said. Robinson told the Review-Journal in April that during prior court hearings, prosecutors said police found no evidence Jaggers had hurt one of the kids.

During closing arguments, Senior Deputy District Attorney Jason Gunnell said Mehn had helped beat and torture Jaggers after taking Pate’s word that something had happened, “without any evidence.”

The sentencing phase of the trial is set to begin on Thursday.

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

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