Las Vegas Strip Hotel Murder Suspect Remains in Jail Cell
A 40-year-old Las Vegas man remains in custody this week for allegedly fatally shooting another man at the Excalibur Hotel & Casino. The two had fought over a $20 gambling voucher at the Las Vegas Strip property.
Christopher Mason was arrested on Monday for Saturday’s killing of Martell Merrill, 35, in a room at the hotel.
Merrill later was given an autopsy.
The Clark County coroner’s office ruled he was killed by a gunshot wound to the arm and chest, according to the Las Vegas Review Journal.
Housekeeper Finds Body
An unnamed hotel housekeeper on Sunday saw a blood stain coming from the hotel room into the hallway. She opened the door and spotted Merrill’s lifeless body.
She quickly called hotel security guards. They alerted local police who launched an investigation.
On Monday, Mason was located by police in Las Vegas’s northwest valley. He was charged with open murder with a deadly weapon. He has been in custody at the Clark County Detention Center since then.
No bail was set. The case was turned over to local prosecutors.
Woman Overhears Shooting
On Saturday evening, Merrill’s unnamed girlfriend heard the two men arguing about a $20 gambling voucher while she was speaking to Merrill over the phone for about 23 minutes, police said.
She alerted Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) officers about the dispute. She added that a suspect, known to her as “Quise,” later identified as Mason, allegedly placed a firearm at her boyfriend’s head.
She then heard what sounded like a thud. That was followed by heavy breathing, police revealed. But she apparently gave police and hotel security guards an incorrect room number so they could not respond to the crime scene that night.
Later, police determined the correct hotel room where Mason was staying. The room’s door was opened by someone shortly before 9 p.m. Saturday. Five minutes later, the door was opened from inside the room.
Mason went into the hallway and then an elevator. He left the hotel at about 9 p.m. and went southbound on Las Vegas Boulevard, according to surveillance video. He was carrying a bag.
Later, inside the bag police discovered there were three speed loaders for a revolver, police said.
Officers also found Merrill got a text from Mason on Saturday morning about a $20 gaming voucher.
The room was registered in Mason’s name. He checked into the room on June 6, according to Las Vegas TV station KSNV.
Merrill and another person were also staying in the room for some of the time Mason was there.
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