A decade might as well have been an eternity.
Shannon Capri’s doubt grew stronger as the years passed, the detectives assigned to her son’s cold case changed and the obstacles to solving his 2007 killing seemed to grow ever taller. After nearly 12 years without an arrest, Capri admits she had given up hope one would ever come.
“It’s in God’s hands,” she recalled thinking. “If it’s meant to be, it will.”
The answer to her prayers was waiting at the bottom of a suburban Las Vegas lake.
On Dec. 1, divers with the Metropolitan Police Department’s search and rescue team found a Raven .25-caliber automatic handgun at the bottom of Lake Lindsey in the northwest valley’s Desert Shores development, according to an arrest report. Ballistics testing in March matched the gun to the bullet that killed her 18-year-old son, Cory Iascone, on a sunny August Sunday in 2007.
Police arrested 30-year-old Jarrell Washington last week on a murder charge with help from a confidential informant who linked Washington to the gun. Iascone’s sister, Ashley MacClatchey, who would periodically check with detectives seeking any development in the case, learned of the ballistics match in March.
She later broke the arrest news to her mother.
“I just thought that they would never solve it,” Capri said.
Much has changed since Iascone — described by his mother as a “magnetic,” roll-with-the punches type of guy who loved lacrosse and ice hockey — was found dead of a gunshot wound Aug. 19, 2007, inside his car on Point Conception Drive, east of Rampart Drive.
“It didn’t ruin my life, but it did change everything,” Capri said.
Take her name, for example.
About six months prior to his death, Iascone and his mother were laughing over dinner about what names they would choose if they were to ever change them, Capri said. Iascone picked about five different names.
His mother, then Laurie Barry, chose Shannon Capri in an homage to her Irish-Catholic heritage and the brand of cigarettes she smoked, she said. The change became official in 2010 to commemorate that conversation and her son.
“It sounds so dumb, but it was something to hold onto,” said Capri, now 58.
Capri wasn’t working for about 10 years after his death, taking time to help MacClatchey with her two children.
MacClatchey and Iascone were best friends, she said.
They had mutual friends with whom she no longer keeps in touch. Watching them grow up, get married and have kids without her brother getting the chance to do the same proved too painful, MacClatchey said.
“For the last 12 years we’ve all had to find a way to survive,” she said.
MacClatchey followed through on the last conversation she ever had with her brother on the day before his death. The siblings were in a difficult family situation at the time, and her brother had been selling marijuana, she said. The pair decided they wanted to reset their lives.
“We both looked at each other and said, ‘We don’t wanna do this anymore,’” MacClatchey said.
Iascone wanted to finish his high school education — he had stopped going to Palo Verde High School months before he was slated to graduate — and then join the Coast Guard, his sister said.
He always loved the water. His family had a boat when he was growing up in Rochester, New York, before they moved to Las Vegas in 2001, and he spent a few of his birthdays out on rented boats at Lake Mead National Recreation Area, MacClatchey said.
While Iascone had decided to finish high school, MacClatchey determined she wanted to go to college. She is now halfway through a master’s degree in forensic psychology, which she hopes to parlay into a career analyzing the criminal mind to find out why somebody could take another’s life, she said.
MacClatchey said she still lives in denial of her brother’s death, and buys him birthday and Christmas presents each year, she said.
She and her mother do what they must to keep Iascone’s memory alive.
“A lot has changed, but we’ve both tried to make the best of it,” Capri said, “because my son doesn’t deserve anything other than being the best that I can be.”