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New book details the life and death of murdered investigative reporter

Updated May 3, 2024 - 7:41 pm

To shake off tension after completing an investigative journalism story, a pair of Las Vegas Review-Journal colleagues would sometimes tease each other — if someone came after one of them, the other would write about it.

A new book penned after Jeff German’s killing hopes to honor that promise, Review-Journal investigative editor Arthur Kane said Thursday.

Kane’s “The Last Story: The Murder of an Investigative Journalist in Las Vegas” is now available for purchase.

Kane will host a book signing event Tuesday at a Barnes & Noble location in Las Vegas.

The event is slated to begin at 7 p.m. at 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Kane said he would give brief remarks and answer questions.

“I feel like I’m keeping that promise by writing this book,” Kane said in a phone interview.

German was found dead in front of his house in September 2022.

Las Vegas police and prosecutors accused Robert Telles, then Clark County public administrator, of killing the journalist who had investigated allegations of misconduct in the official’s office.

The series of stories coincided with Telles’ loss during a re-election bid.

The former official is awaiting trial.

“In The Last Story, Kane delivers an intense narrative of courage, betrayal, and the unrelenting quest for justice,” reads the book’s description.

Kane noted the national attention the slaying received in the immediate aftermath of Telles’ arrest days after the killing.

But a few months later, Kane noted that people he would speak to — even among journalism circles — hadn’t heard about German’s death.

A sense to honor and keep alive German’s legacy inspired Kane to write a thorough narrative, Kane said.

“The story really needed to get out, because you don’t expect a murder to happen to a journalist in this country,” Kane said. “This job is not just sitting behind a typewriter, it can be dangerous.”

Kane wrote the book independently, during his time off work leading the investigations team at the Review-Journal. Or as he described it, “Every waking moment I wasn’t at work.”

He said he interviewed up to 90 people at least once, and looked through stacks of documents and archives related to German’s four-decade-old career.

German and Kane worked together starting in 2016.

After each of them completed a big story, they would warn each other: “You better watch out,” Kane recalled.

It was a way to compliment each other’s work, he noted.

About two weeks before German’s killing, Kane remembered telling him, “buddy, this guy is gonna come and get you.”

German responded: “You better write about it.”

The 286-page book was published by Wildblue Press.

Contact Ricardo Torres-Cortez at rtorres@reviewjournal.com.

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