Former politician Robert Telles pleads not guilty to murder of Las Vegas reporter Jeff German

Prosecutors said they would not seek the death penalty against the former Las Vegas-area politicians who pleaded not guilty on Wednesday to the murder of a veteran investigative journalist who wrote articles critical of him and his managerial conduct.

“Not guilty, your honor,” robert telsA Democrat, who has been ousted from her elected office, reacted on September 2 during her indictment on an indictment. Las Vegas Review-Journal reporter Jeff German outside his house.

Tells, 45, appears with his new attorney, Ryan Helmick, who was hired by Telles to replace Deputy Public Defenders initially named in his case At the taxpayer’s expense following a declaration by Tels that he was unable to afford a lawyer.

The Review-Journal reported last week that Telles and his wife were earning $20,500 a month before their arrest and that they have five rental homes in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Local property records show that the couple also owns a Las Vegas home with a taxable value of more than $320,000.

Jeff German, host of Mobed Up, with Planet Hollywood (formerly Aladdin) on the Strip on Wednesday, June 2, 2021 in Las Vegas.

KM Cannon / Las Vegas Review-Journal / Tribune News Service via Getty Images

A trial date was not immediately set. Tails’ next court date is November 2 before Clark County District Court Judge Mark Denton.

Helmick declined to comment out-of-court.

The Telles were the administrators of Clark County, in charge of the office that handles the property of people who die without a will or family contacts. Six former coworkers, including Rita Page Reed, Tails’ former top assistant, attended the court hearings.

Reid won the Democratic Party primary in June and is competing against two other candidates on the upcoming ballot to replace Telles. She called Telles “a bit disturbing and very emotional” in court, but told reporters that she appeared to respect the reports she had written about German and the conditions in the office.

“The ultimate price Jeff German paid was to support all of us,” Reid said.

A grand jury last week indicted Tails with murder by a victim’s weapon of age 60 or older. At trial, he could face the prospect of life in prison without parole.

Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson said he and a panel of prosecutors concluded that there were no qualifying factors to make Telles’ trial a larger case.

Journalist Murder - Las Vegas
Outgoing Clark County Public Administrator Robert Telles appears in court during his indictment at the Regional Justice Center on Tuesday, September 20, 2022 in Las Vegas.

Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal by AP

“We can only consider the death penalty if a dire circumstance exists,” Wolfson said.

Nevada law lists 15 extremists, mostly murders, while committing other crimes such as kidnapping, rape, escaping from custody, torture or multiple homicides. Killing of a police officer, prison guard or firefighter in the line of duty also qualify.

prosecutors say evidence The DNA of Tales found under German’s nails includes a video showing a man walking Tails near German’s house, and a vehicle in the area believed to be Tails.

Police lawyers say the criminal investigation will not be complete, however, until officers try and review records on German’s cellphones and electronic devices to see if there is more evidence.

Tels’s previous lawyers said they wanted to know whether those devices contained information that could exonerate them or identify others with the motive to kill the Germans.

That dispute has led to a case pending before the state’s Supreme Court over concerns about disclosing German’s confidential sources and notes.

The Review-Journal, with the support of dozens of media organizations, is struggling to release the information. It cites Nevada’s so-called “news shield law,” which, along with the federal Privacy Protection Act and First Amendment safeguards, is among the strictest in the country.

German, 69, was widely respected for his tenacity, and his colleagues said he was working on follow-up reports about Telles and the Office of the Public Administrator when he was assassinated.

The state Supreme Court has also suspended Telles’ law license pending the results of a State Bar of Nevada investigation into allegations that he misappropriated clients’ funds at his private law office.

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