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Man critical after being shot Monday by Las Vegas cop

Metro officers shot and critically wounded a man they said pointed a gun at them Monday night during a robbery investigation in the southeast valley, according to Las Vegas police.

Police identified him as James Nelson, 21, of Las Vegas. He faces one charge of assault with deadly weapon on a police officer.

Nelson underwent surgery and was recovering but still in critical condition Monday night, said Capt. Matt McCarthy, of Metro’s Office of Internal Oversight. An updated condition was not available Tuesday.

Police responded to a robbery call about 8 p.m. near the intersection of Mountain Vista Street and Twain Avenue, near Boulder Highway, McCarthy said in a video statement.

Once there, officers were told the robber had left, Metro said. The investigation then led police to budget hotel The Suites, 4855 Boulder Highway, about a mile southeast of where the initial call came from.

There officers found Nelson, McCarthy said, “accompanied with two females.” He was spotted walking between two cars in the Suites parking lot, McCarthy said. The pair of officers told him to stop, but he didn’t, and they thought he was going to run.

One of the officers then took a “hands-on approach” to stop Nelson, McCarthy said, and a “slight struggle” ensued.

The second officer noticed a gun in Nelson’s waistband, McCarthy said. That is when Nelson pulled the gun and started turning toward the officer trying to take him to the ground.

Nelson pointed the gun at the officer, McCarthy said.

The second officer yelled, “Gun, gun, gun!” McCarthy said, and the officer struggling with Nelson “created a distance.”

Nelson pointed the gun again, McCarthy said, and the second officer fired several times.

It wasn’t immediately clear how many times the officer hit Nelson.

The man was taken to Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, McCarthy said.

Police said Tuesday they don’t know the identity of the “two females” that were with Nelson when they first spotted him Monday night. Metro asked the public for help identifying and finding them.

No other injuries were reported and police will release more information 72 hours after the shooting, McCarthy said.

Anyone with information on the incident can contact police at 702-828-8452. To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 702-385-5555 or www.crimestoppersofnv.com.

Review-Journal reporter Wesley Juhl contributed to this story.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

Contact Ricardo Torres at rtorres@reviewjournal.com and 702-383-0381. Find him on Twitter: @rickytwrites

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