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County official arrested in Las Vegas reporter’s murder due in court

A view of the city of Las Vegas, in Nevada, U.S., May 4, 2021. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo

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Sept 8 (Reuters) – A county public administrator in Las Vegas was due to make an initial court appearance on Thursday after being arrested for the murder of a Las Vegas investigative reporter who had written news articles exposing complaints of wrongdoing by the official.

Clark County Public Administrator Robert Telles faces one count of murder with the use of a deadly weapon, according to online court records. No attorney was listed for Telles, who was scheduled to appear in Las Vegas Justice Court on Thursday afternoon.

Telles was arrested on Wednesday five days after Jeff German, a reporter with the Las Vegas Review-Journal, was fatally stabbed outside his home after what police described as an altercation with his killer.

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“Telles was very upset about German’s reporting about his role as public administrator,” Captain Dori Koren of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said at a news conference on Thursday.

A vehicle matching the description of Telles’s maroon GMC Denali was seen parked in front of German’s home on the morning of the murder.

Police also recovered a pair of shoes and a straw hat from Telles’s home that matched those worn by the suspect, as seen on video footage obtained by police. Blood was found on the shoes and Telles’s DNA was found at the crime scene, Koren said.

Police have not found the murder weapon.

German, 69, was well known in Las Vegas for his decades of reporting on political malfeasance and organized crime in Nevada’s largest city.

German had spent months reporting on complaints that Telles had an inappropriate relationship with a subordinate and oversaw an abusive workplace. Telles denied the accusations, saying the complaints were from disgruntled “old-timers.”

Soon after German’s investigation was published, Telles failed in his re-election bid, losing the Democratic primary in June. He was due to leave office in January.

“It is troublesome because it is journalist and we expect journalism to be open and transparent and a watchdog for government,” Sheriff Joe Lombardo said during the news conference.

On Wednesday, Telles declined to speak to reporters outside his home following the police interview and search. He was wearing what appeared to be a hazmat suit and sandals.

Telles was later arrested and taken out of house on a stretcher. He had self-inflicted wounds that were not life threatening, Koren said.

The Review-Journal provided authorities with information about German’s reporting that helped the investigation, the sheriff said.

Glenn Cook, the Review-Journal’s executive editor, said German’s colleagues were devastated by his killing.

“He was the gold standard of the news business,” Cook said in a statement. “It’s hard to imagine what Las Vegas would be like today without his many years of shining a bright light on dark places.”

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Reporting by Brendan O’Brien in Chicago, editing by Deepa Babington

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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