Politician was 'lying in wait' in 'premeditated' slaying of Las Vegas journalist, prosecutors say

  • In US
  • 2022-09-13 20:14:01Z
  • By NBC News

Nevada politician Robert Telles, the man charged in the "premeditated" killing of a prominent Las Vegas investigative journalist, was "lying in wait" for the reporter, according to prosecutors.

Clark County Public Administrator Robert Telles, 45, was arrested Sept. 7 and booked on a charge of open murder in the death of Las Vegas Review-Journal reporter Jeff German, police said.

German, 69, who reported on alleged bullying and favoritism in Telles' office, was found stabbed to death outside of his Bronze Circle home on Sept. 3, police said.

A criminal complaint filed Monday in Clark County court shows Telles is now charged with murder with the following enhancements: use of a deadly weapon and victim 60 years of age or older. Such enhancements can result in longer sentences if convicted.

The one-page criminal complaint also sheds new light on the killing.

It states that Telles on or about Sept. 2 killed German with a knife by stabbing German "multiple times about the body."

Jeff German on the Las Vegas Strip (K.
Jeff German on the Las Vegas Strip (K.  

The complaint described the killing as "willful, deliberate, and premeditated." It was allegedly "perpetrated by lying in wait" for German and "perpetrated by abuse of an older person."

NBC News has reached out to Telles' attorney for comment.

Detectives honed in on Telles as a suspect following German's death because he publicly expressed his anger at the journalist for his reporting, police said.

"Telles was upset about articles that were being written by German as an investigative journalist that exposed potential wrongdoing, and Telles had publicly expressed his issues with that reporting," Las Vegas Police Capt. Dori Koren said Thursday.

"And then ultimately Telles was also upset - from what we found out later - that there was additional reporting that was pending," Koren added.

Following German's death, police released video evidence showing a possible suspect wearing a wide straw hat and a bright orange reflective long-sleeve shirt and video of a red or maroon GMC Denali driving suspiciously through German's neighborhood before the Sept. 2 slaying.

Detectives found a vehicle matching that description parked at Telles' home and registered to his wife.

During a search warrant of Telles' home Sept. 8, investigators found partly destroyed shoes and a hat resembling the clothes of the suspect.

A DNA sample from Telles' clothes ultimately linked him to the crime scene and prompted his arrest, police said.

Telles' office oversees the estates of Clark County residents who die without legal next of kin.

German's reporting about Telles' office may have played a role in Telles losing his job as he narrowly lost his bid for re-election in the Democratic primary over the summer.

Clark County said in a statement because Telles is a public administrator in an elected position his access to county offices and property has been suspended and the administrator's office will be closed with employees working from home until a decision is made.

The county said it is "reviewing its options under the law" regarding Telles' employment status.

Telles was ordered to be held at the Clark County Detention Center  without bail last week.

During a brief court appearance Tuesday morning, a judge postponed the arraignment of the official. Telles, wearing a blue jail uniform, stood in shackles and had bandages on each arm.

Police said he had self-inflicted wounds, which were non-life-threatening, when he was taken into custody.

This article was originally published on NBCNews.com


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