Prosecutors announced Wednesday that they plan to seek the death penalty against two of three men accused of storming into a southwest valley Lee’s Discount Liquor armed with handguns and killing a clerk.
The two men — Lee “Dominic” Sykes, 21, and Ray Charles “Ray Ray” Brown, 24 — are accused in the death of Matthew Christensen, 24.
Both defendants are charged with murder, robbery with a deadly weapon, first-degree kidnapping, burglary while in possession of a firearm, coercion with a deadly weapon, conspiracy to commit robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.
“Nevada law provides for the death penalty to be sought in certain circumstances. It is reserved for the worst of the worst,” Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson said in a statement. “The circumstances of this case make it clear that it is appropriate for us to seek the death penalty against Mr. Sykes and Mr. Brown.”
Sykes’ brother, Lee “Murry” Sykes, 22, also is charged in the robbery and killing but is not facing the death penalty. Wolfson said Murry Sykes was unarmed during the incident and lacks a violent criminal past.
Authorities have identified Brown as the man who fired the fatal shots.
Brown’s attorney, Josh Tomsheck, released the following statement Wednesday:
“While our views are contrary to theirs, we understand the district attorney’s ability to seek death as punishment. This doesn’t change our resolve in finding a just resolution to this case through the appropriate channels. The fact that the district attorney has filed murder charges or has filed a notice of intent to seek the death penalty changes nothing in regards to Mr. Brown receiving the best defense available and asserting all of his constitutional rights.”
Special Public Defender David Schieck represents Dominic Sykes.
“Clearly, he is not the shooter,” Schieck said. “I’m a little surprised they would seek death on a 21-year-old non-shooter. But the district attorney has discretion to do what he wants.”
The April 18 killing and robbery were captured by a surveillance camera, and that video was made public Wednesday.
In a span of about three minutes, the men robbed the store at 8785 W. Warm Springs Road and ordered Christensen to open a safe, which he could not access, police have said.
All three defendants are being held without bail at the Clark County Detention Center.
A previous version of this story incorrectly stated the killing occurred on April 20.
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