(LAS VEGAS) — A Nevada county official has been arrested and charged with murder in connection with the death of a Las Vegas investigative journalist, according to authorities.
Robert Telles, 45, was arrested Wednesday night following a SWAT operation at his home, officials said, after DNA evidence was found in his home that linked him to the crime scene.
Las Vegas Review-Journal reporter Jeff German was found stabbed to death outside his home on Sept. 3, according to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. Telles, who served as the Clark County public administrator, blamed German for ruining his career in politics and his marriage, prosecutors said Thursday.
Telles made his first court appearance on Thursday, where a judge granted the prosecution’s request that he be held without bail.
The judge ordered Telles, who did not speak during his court appearance, detained after noting the steps Telles allegedly took to cover up his crimes, including casing the neighborhood for over an hour, leaving his cellphone at home and dressing in disguise.
Telles was booked into Clark County Jail on a murder charge, according to inmate records. He did not enter a please on Thursday.
Police said the day before German’s murder, Telles was seen approaching German’s home, where he allegedly had an altercation with him.
Telles, police said, then left his phone at home before heading to German’s home last Saturday. Dressed in disguise, which police described him as wearing a straw hat and reflective vest, Telles allegedly stabbed the reporter seven times.
On the second day of the investigation, police got video of the suspect’s maroon GMC vehicle, which police said was the break in the case.
Police focused on Telles because of his anger over stories written by German, officials said at a press conference Thursday. Then they found a vehicle outside Telles’ home that matched the suspect’s vehicle.
In the search warrant execution at Telles’ home, they found a pair of shoes that matched the suspect’s shoes, police said. There was blood on the shoes, which police said were cut up to destroy evidence. They said they also found the straw hat cut up to allegedly destroy evidence.
Police got positive DNA results from Telles from the murder scene and they moved in to make the arrest on Wednesday. Prosecutors said that Telles’ DNA was found on German’s hands and fingernails.
Telles was taken into custody with non-life-threatening, self-inflicted stab wounds, police said.
Las Vegas Sheriff Joseph Lombardo said this has been an “unusual” case, and that “the killing of a journalist is particularly troublesome.”
“It is troublesome because it is a journalist. And we expect journalism to be open and transparent and the watchdog for government,” Lombardo said Thursday. “And when people take it upon themselves to create harm associated with that profession, I think it’s very important we put all eyes on and address the case appropriately such as we did in this case.”
Telles’ next hearing is set for Tuesday.
ABC News’ Connor Burton, Melissa Gaffney, Teddy Grant and Alex Presha contributed to this report.
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