‘Dateline’ finds nothing glamorous in homicide detectives’ work

After reviewing an advance copy of tonight’s compelling "Dateline NBC" episode on the grisly and senseless Ginger Candela murder case, I was reminded once again what a brutal job Metro Homicide detectives perform every day.

The game seems so glamorous on television, where murders are committed and solved in 30 minutes with ample time for snappy patter and laundry soap commercials. Television drama is nothing compared with the Vegas reality.

NBC devotes nearly two hours to real crime in Las Vegas, most of that time spent on the Candela case, but it’s the timing of "Dateline" producer Dan Slepian’s camera work that makes the segment special. Slepian tells me his crew had just finished shooting a "Vegas Undercover" segment for reporter Chris Hansen in late 2009 when Metro Homicide caught the call to 3136 Westfield St., where Candela lived and died. Detectives Dolphis Boucher and Joel Kisner worked the case, which started with an unidentified corpse stuffed into a large garbage can and ended with the arrest of a suitcase swami.

British national, self-styled spiritual healer, and con man Michael Lane was charged with Candela’s murder. In 72 hours, detectives gathered enough incriminating evidence to bury Lane, who was picked up Dec. 3, 2009, in Ventura, Calif.

The "Dateline" report is different in another way. It will air before Lane’s trial is completed. Although he already has confessed to the crime, he is insisting on going to trial. The district attorney is seeking the death penalty.

STANDING O: Mayor Oscar Goodman gave his last State of the City address Tuesday night at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health downtown in the heart of his redevelopment dreamscape. Leave it to the mayor to buff his vision for Las Vegas to a high-gloss shine.

Recession, what recession?

At one point the martini-sipping mayor said, "We’re a very resilient community. We’re a community that bounces back. We’re a community that says ‘yes.’ There’s no such thing as ‘I can’t’ or ‘no.’ "

If only everyone were half as confident.

Perhaps Las Vegas needs more of Goodman’s optimism — or more of his gin.

BERKLEY MEETING: Leave it to Congresswoman Shelley Berkley to send a clear message to those who suspect she might make herself scarce in the wake of the shooting in Tucson of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

Berkley will host a "Congress on Your Corner" constituent services meeting at 9 a.m. today at her Las Vegas office at 2340 Paseo Del Prado, Suite D-106.

She is receiving security assistance from Metro, however. In a statement, Berkley says, "Being easily accessible to those I represent is one of my most important duties as the Congresswoman from Nevada’s 1st District."

Other members of Congress should do the same. It would be a fitting tribute to Giffords, who continues to improve after being shot in the head in an assassination attempt Saturday.

BOB’S FAREWELL: Leave it to former Port Tack owner Bob Kostelecky to make sure everyone has a good time — even if it is at his memorial service and wake. Kostelecky died in California recently after a long fight with cancer.

The Port Tack was one of the great crossroads lounges for Las Vegas from every strata of society.

His memorial service Wednesday at the Spanish Trail clubhouse brought together many old friends, who not only shared memories but a final meal and toast with vintage wine to Bob.

Bob’s son, Milo, told how his father planned the service from his sick bed.

SEZ WHO? SEZ YOU!: Be sure to check out my new blog feature that stars agitated and animated column readers giving their opinions of my opinion. It’s not exactly civilized discourse, but I think you’ll enjoy it. (http://www.lvrj.com/blogs/smith)

This week’s topic: The Tucson shooting.

Have an item for the Bard of the Boulevard? E-mail comments and contributions to Smith@reviewjournal.com or call (702) 383-0295. He also blogs at lvrj.com/blogs/smith.

Vegas Homeless Remembered
Las Vegas vigil remembers 179 homeless people who died over the past year in Clark County. (David Guzman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
A look inside Tesla’s Nevada Gigafactory
Tesla's Gigafactory east of Reno produces the batteries that fuel the company's electric cars. Production has created more than 7,000 jobs, and the campus that includes one of the largest buildings in the world is expected to triple in size by the time it is completed. Tesla Vice President Chris Lister leads a tour of the facility. (Bill Dentzer/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Garnet Interchange Ribbon Cutting
The Nevada Department of Transportation celebrated the completion of the $63 million I-15-US 93 Garnet Interchange project. The project includes a modified diverging diamond interchange and a 5-mile widening of US 93.
State Foresters Hunt for Record Trees
Urban foresters from the Nevada Division of Forestry hunt for record setting trees.
Rick Davidson directs NFR satellite feed
Rick Davidson directs the Wrangler NFR's live satellite feed from a production trailer outside the Thomas & Mack Center. (Patrick Everson)
Scott Boras, Bryce Harper's agent, speaks to media at baseball's winter meetings
Baseball agent Scott Boras updates media on the contract negotiations of his client Bryce Harper during baseball's winter meetings at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Dec. 12, 2018. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Achievement School District
The achievement district faced strong opposition from traditional schools back in its beginnings in 2016. But with schools like Nevada Rise and Nevada Prep, it's slowly and steadily growing. Amelia Pak-Harvey/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Fresno State QB on record-breaking receiver
Fresno State quarterback Marcus McMaryion talks record-setting receiver KeeSean Johnson. Video by Mark Anderson/Las Vegas Review-Journal
The annual 'Shop with a Cop' event at Target
This year’s "Shop with a Cop" event gave about 40 children the chance to shop at Target alongside a North Las Vegas Police officers. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @Bizutesfaye
Melvin Dummar dead at 74
Melvin Dummar has died at 74. Dummar was famous for claiming to have saved Howard Hughes in a Nevada desert in 1967. Dummar claimed to have been left $156 million in Hughes’ will. The will mysteriously appeared after Hughes’ death in 1976. It was dismissed as a fake two years later. Dummar never saw a dime of the billionaire's fortune. Dummar died Saturday in Nye County.
Officer-involved shooting in Nye County
The Nye County Sheriff's Office gives information about a shooting in Pahrump on Thursday night after a man began firing shots outside of his home. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
Law Enforcement Active Shooter Training Exercise
Multiple Las Vegas Valley law enforcement agencies held an active shooter drill at the Department of Public Safety’s Parole and Probation office on December 6, 2018. Officials set up the training exercise to include multiple active shooters, a barricaded suspect and multiple casualties. (Katelyn Newberg/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Public memorial service for Jerry Herbst
Archiving effort hits milestone at Clark County Museum
The Clark County Museum catalogs the final item from the bulk of Route 91 Harvest festival artifacts. (John Przybys/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pearl Harbor survivor Edward Hall talks about his memories of Dec. 7, 1941
U.S. Army Corps Edward Hall, a 95-year-old survivor of Pearl Harbor talks about his memories of that horrific day. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Final Route 91 Harvest festival remembrance objects catalogued at Clark County Museum
The last of the more than 17,000 items left at the makeshift memorial near the Las Vegas sign after the Oct. 1 shootings have been catalogued at the Clark County Museum in Las Vegas. The final item was a black-and-white bumper sticker bearing "#VEGASSTRONG. An additional 200 items currently on display at the museum will be catalogued when the exhibit comes down. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dozier execution timeline
Scott Dozier was set to be executed July 11, 2018, at the Ely State Prison. Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez delayed the execution.
Grand Jury Indicts Constable for theft
A Clark County grand jury indicted Henderson Constable Earl Mitchell. A Las Vegas Review-Journal investigation prompted the criminal probe. The newspaper found Mitchell wrote himself thousands in checks, took out cash at ATMs and traveled on county funds. He faces four felony counts of theft and a county of public misconduct. Mitchell and his attorney could not be reached for comment.
93-year-old WWII veteran arrested during visit to VA hospital
Dr. S. Jay Hazan, 93, a World War II veteran, talks about his arrest during his visit to VA hospital on Friday, Nov. 30. (Erik Verduzco Las Vegas Review-Journal @Erik_Verduzco_
Pearl Harbor survivor struggles in her senior years
Winifred Kamen, 77, survived the attack on Pearl Harbor as an infant, works a 100 percent commission telemarketing job to make ends meet. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Metropolitan Briefing 18th street gang
Las Vegas Metropolitan briefs the media on the recent arrests made regarding the 18th street gang.
Man shot in Las Vegas traffic stop had knife, police say
Police said the man fatally shot by an officer during a traffic stop in downtown Las Vegas had a “homemade knife.” Demontry Floytra Boyd, 43, died Saturday at University Medical Center from multiple gunshot wounds after officer Paul Bruning, 48, shot him during a traffic stop. Bruning pulled Boyd over on suspicion of driving recklessly at 7:41 a.m. near Sunrise Avenue and 18th Street.
Catahoula dogs rescued from home in Moapa Valley
Catahoula dogs were brought to The Animal Foundation after being rescued from home in Moapa Valley.
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses in California wildfire
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses she suffered in California's Woolsey Fire in Malibu in November. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Benefit dinner for Kerry Clasby, the Intuitive Forager
Sonia El-Nawal of Rooster Boy Cafe in Las Vegas talks about having a benefit for Kerry Clasby, known as the Intuitive Forager, who suffered losses on her farm in California’s Woolsey Fire in Malibu. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former President George H.W. Bush dies at 94
Former President George H.W. Bush has died at the age of 94. He died Friday night in Houston, about eight months after the death of his wife, Barbara.
Las Vegans Celebrate Big Snowfall
Las Vegans celebrate big snowfall at Lee Canyon.
Exploring old mines for denim jeans and other vintage items
Caden Gould of Genoa, Nev. talks about his experiences looking for vintage denim jeans and other items in old mines and other places areas across Nevada and the west.
Officers share photo of dead gunman after Las Vegas shooting
A little over an hour after SWAT officers entered Stephen Paddock's suite at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas police officers far from the scene were already sharing cell phone photos of the dead Oct. 1 gunman.
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like