Frankie Allan Watters, 27, was originally tried and found guilty of a number of offenses, including possession of a stolen car, grand larceny and failing to stop for a police officer. These acts allegedly occurred in 2011, when officers say that Watters stole a vehicle and then wrecked it, leading him to steal another car and then become involved in a high-speed chase after which time he was arrested.
During the man’s trial, the prosecutor showed the jury a PowerPoint slide containing the suspect’s photograph. This photograph had the word “guilty” superimposed on it. The slide was shown during closing arguments, at which time the prosecutor in this case asked the jury to render a guilty verdict. Attorneys for Watters claim that this tainted the minds of jurors. The Nevada Supreme Court agreed, saying that “the state has not shown beyond a reasonable doubt that the booking-photo slide sequence did not affect the jury’s determination of Watters’ guilt.”
At this time, a date for a second trial has not yet been set. Until that time, Watters is spending time in Ely State Prison in Ely, Nevada.
Advocates for this bill claimed that it was long overdue, as the cost of legal representation for a defendant who is facing the death penalty is an undue burden on taxpayers. Opponents of capital punishment are also praising the bill, saying that it could be a step toward eliminating what they claim is a sentence that is often unfairly handed out.
The study will take place over the next year, with results being available prior to the start of the 2015 legislative session. At that time, lawmakers will be able to determine if capital punishment is indeed cost-effective or whether it should be abolished in favor of life without parole instead.
A number of legislators opted to support the bill partly because Nevada is fairly lax when it comes to carrying out scheduled executions anyway. The last execution here took place in 2006, and none are currently scheduled for the foreseeable future. Although Nevada does currently have an execution chamber, it does not meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and state officials are hesitant to use it because of that fact. The Nevada Department of Corrections has been denied funding to build a new chamber that would be in compliance with this act.
According to police, the incident happened around 9:45 p.m. near the University of Las Vegas. The victim was apparently carrying his television near his apartment complex when the robber fired warning shots at him. The man then dropped the television, where it was subsequently snatched by the thief.
After having his television snatched, the victim then tried to wrestle it from his attacker to no avail. In order to deter the man, the robber then fired more shots, one of which hit the man in the leg. The victim was then taken to Sunrise Hospital for the injuries he sustained, and was later released. It is not clear what happened to the television, but it is likely that the man who fired the shots made off with it.
Police have made no arrests in this case, and may be unsure as to the shooter’s identity. Anyone who may have information about this crime is encouraged to contact the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department either through their website or by calling the Crime Stoppers Tip Line at 702-385-5555. Informants may remain anonymous if they wish.
Most often perpetrated by teenagers, those who play the knockout game choose the most vulnerable people to target as their victims. Women, the elderly and handicapped individuals are often targeted because they are easy prey. People are often thrust violently to the ground, and many sustain serious injuries, since these acts often cause them to take a tumble onto hard pavement.
While teens are often involved, the knockout game does not appear to be related to any sort of gang initiation. Instead, it is something that many of these people do for kicks without thinking of the consequences of their actions. As a result, at least one state is considering upping the penalties for those who are caught perpetrating these random acts of violence.
One way to avoid being a knockout victim is to be aware of your surroundings at all times. Since the element of surprise is a factor in many attacks, you should avoid talking on your cell phone or otherwise becoming distracted whenever you are out and about. If you belong to one of the targeted groups, try to take someone with you whenever you go out shopping or running errands, since people who are walking alone are much easier to get to than those who are by themselves are.
What appears to have happened is that scammers produced false police reports that claimed an individual was the victim of identity or credit card theft. These reports were then submitted to various credit reporting agencies in an effort to “dispute” certain transactions. In doing so, the perpetrators were hoping to eliminate negative data, thereby boosting their credit scores. In all, more than 100 false reports were submitted, and were said to have originated from a number of police agencies across the country.
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police recently identified several suspects in this forgery ring, six of whom have already been formally charged. Arrest warrants have also been issued for four men who have yet to be taken into custody. These individuals all face charges of establishing a financial forgery laboratory, racketeering, and forgery, and could be slapped with extended jail time if they are found guilty of these offenses.
Police are unsure at this time if there are even more instances of forgery that have yet to be uncovered. Those who have additional information about any wrongdoings can contact the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department with the details. Callers may choose to remain anonymous.