LAS VEGAS — An assailant armed with a large kitchen knife killed two people and injured six others in stabbings along the Las Vegas Strip before his arrest on Thursday, police said.
Three people were hospitalized in critical condition and three others were in stable condition, according to Las Vegas police, who said they began receiving 911 calls about the stabbings around 11:40 a.m. in front of the casino and from the Wynn Hotel.
Yoni Barrios, 32, was incarcerated at the Clark County Detention Center on two counts of murder and six counts of attempted murder, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said in a statement.
It was not immediately clear whether Barrios had an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
Barrios, who is not a Las Vegas resident, was arrested by Sands security guards and Metropolitan Police officers while running on a sidewalk on the Strip, police said.
“This was an isolated incident,” Metropolitan Police Deputy Chief James LaRochelle said in a statement. “All evidence points to Barrios acting alone and there are no outstanding suspects at this time.”
Police said they are continuing to investigate the motive, but do not believe there was an altercation prior to the attacks.
The Clark County Coroner’s Office identified the victims who were killed as Brent Allan Hallett, 47, and Maris Mareen Digiovanni, 30, both residents of Las Vegas.
The names of those injured in the attack were not immediately released.
The initial stabbing was unprovoked and on the east sidewalk of Las Vegas Boulevard. The suspect then headed south and stabbed other people, LaRochelle said.
The man fled and was followed by 911 callers before being taken into custody, authorities said. Police recovered the “large, long-bladed knife” that was allegedly used, LaRochelle said, calling the case a “difficult to understand murder investigation.”
Dewaun Turner, 47, a porter at the District at Resorts World, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal he was walking home when he saw two people dressed as showgirls in red dresses and heels running away from a man with a knife . He saw one slide near an escalator to a pedestrian bridge in front of the Wynn Las Vegas. The man stabbed her, jumped up and stabbed the other, then ran south towards the Palazzo, Turner said. The man with the knife said nothing, he said.
Turner said he then saw the man stab a man who was walking with a woman, then stab two other women, Turner said.
One of the two dressed as showgirls was bleeding profusely and making no sound as the other put pressure on her companion’s wounds, he said.
“Ten or 15 steps ahead and I would have been one of the people stabbed,” Turner said.
There were no other suspects in the case and “the Strip is safe,” Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo said.
“Locals and tourists are the victims of this crime,” Lombardo said.
Witnesses told Las Vegas TV stations that some of the victims appeared to be showgirls or street performers taking pictures with tourists on the Strip.
The suspect told a woman he was a chef who wanted to take a picture with some of the showgirls with his knife, but he started stabbing people when the group declined the man’s offer, the woman said. wife at KTNV.
Jason Adams told KLAS he witnessed the attack on a showgirl.
“This guy came and ran and started stabbing this lady in front of me and she ran around the escalators and she was trying to get up under the bridge and her girlfriend was trying to help her,” Adams said, adding that the attack had taken place. very quickly.
Pierre Fandrich, a tourist from Canada, told KTNV he did not see the suspect stabbing as he walked along the Strip. But he said he thought he heard “three or four showgirls laughing,” and it turned out to be screaming.
Fandrich said he saw “lots of blood” as a woman ran across a bridge, one was on the ground and another was stabbed in the back as she tried to help the fallen woman.
Fandrich also told KTNV that he believed one of the victims fell off the bridge because there was so much blood on the ground.
Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak posted a message on social media saying, “Our hearts are with everyone affected by this tragedy.”
“At the state level, we will continue to work with law enforcement partners to make resources available on the ground and ensure the Las Vegas Strip remains a safe and welcoming place for everyone,” said Sisolak.
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