Los Angeles Police Arrest Suspect Accused of Sparking Las Vegas Strip Shooting

  • Share
  • Read Later
Ammar Harris
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department / ASSOCIATED PRESS

This image provided by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department shows Ammar Harris in a booking photo from a 2012 arrest in Las Vegas.

Police in Los Angeles have arrested a suspect in connection with the shooting and subsequent explosive vehicle crash that killed three people last week on the Las Vegas Strip.

Ammar Harris, 26, who describes himself online as a “pimp,” was taken into custody Thursday morning in a North Hollywood apartment, after a week-long manhunt that originated 250 miles up the 15 freeway. Last Thursday, Harris created quite the spectacle on the Strip, the famous stretch of roadway through Vegas’s casinos and bars often frequented by tourists and gamblers.

In an altercation believed to have began at the valet area of the Aria Resort and Casino at 4 a.m., the fight quickly spilled out onto the street. There, Kenny Cherry, 27, an aspiring hip-hop artist who went by the moniker Kenny Clutch, was driving his Maserati when he was shot to death, gunned down in a barrage of gunfire from a Range Rover. Clutch’s Maserati then sped through a red light and slammed into a taxicab, exploding both vehicles and killing cab driver Michael Bouldon, 62, and the taxi’s passenger Sandra Sutton-Wasmund, 48. The SUV managed to speed from the scene despite the flying bullets and flaming wreckage, launching a slew of questions about the people responsible for the shooting.

As the major Strip intersection remained closed for 15 hours while authorities cleaned up the scene, the ensuing multi-state search led police to three women who were passengers in Harris’s SUV during the crash. After authorities were alerted to Harris’s name and picture, they placed billboards throughout the city with his picture on it seeking tips leading to his arrest.

(MORE: Las Vegas Strip Shooting Is Just Latest in String of Recent Violence)

By Wednesday, police had found and interviewed all three women who were riding in the Range Rover. One of them, Tineesha Lashun Howard, was found in a state outside of Nevada, which police would not identify. Howard, 22, who has a history of arrests for prostitution, was sought as a person of interest, as they thought she might be in danger. Police say none of the women are suspects in the shooting.

Harris, whose online photos paint himself as a “pimp” and show him holding fists full of money, even appears in a YouTube video bragging while counting hundred-dollar bills. He has a long history of delinquency, convicted in 2004 for trying to sell a stolen weapon and again the same year on a misdemeanor marijuana charge. He was arrested last year in Vegas in a 2010 prostitution case and charged with robbery, sexual assault and kidnapping among other felonies, but the case was dropped in June.

— With reporting by The Associated Press