Nevada Casino Murder Suspect Released on Bail, Angers Victim’s Relatives

Posted on: September 17, 2021, 12:34h. 

Last updated on: September 17, 2021, 01:29h.

Prosecutors and family members of an Aquarius Casino Resort homicide victim are indignant that a Nevada judge set bail in the case. That allowed the suspect to be released before his murder trial begins.

Police found the victim on the casino floor
Laughlin, Nev.’s Aquarius Casino Resort, pictured above. The casino was the site of a murder in July. The defendant was released recently after the bond was set and posted. (Image: Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Earlier this week, bail was set at $250,000 for David Cruz, 45, of Las Vegas, by Justice of the Peace Tim Atkins in Laughlin Justice Court.

Cruz was arrested on Aug. 26 and then placed in the Clark County Detention Center in Las Vegas. His attorney asked for bail to be set at $25,000.

Alejo Jack Areyan, 44, of California, died following injuries from the July 30 fight which took place in the Laughlin, Nev. gaming property, according to the Mohave Valley Daily News, an Arizona newspaper.

Police found Areyan on the casino floor. He was not responsive. Other suspects fled the scene before police arrived. A short time later, Areyan was declared dead at Western Arizona Regional Medical Center in Bullhead City.

A struggle broke out in the early morning hours in the casino. The fight was divided between two groups. Two men from the second group were in an altercation with the homicide victim, based on initial reports. The victim was knocked to the floor. He apparently lost consciousness, according to KVVU, a Nevada TV station.

Police are believed to have reviewed video from the casino’s security system before making the arrest.

Victim’s Family Questions Judge’s Actions

The Clark County Chief Deputy District Attorney Bishop Pesci asked for bail to be denied, Rosemary Flores, Areyan’s sister-in-law, told the Daily News.

“He should never have been let out on bail,” Flores said.

Flores called it both “unethical” and “irrational” that a defendant in a murder trial was released before the trial. Jasmine Arayan, Areyan’s daughter, said justice was not served.

Clark County District Attorney Steven B. Wolfson shared the relatives’ concerns, stating the judge should have set no bail.

The case was continued to Oct. 28. A preliminary hearing will take place in Laughlin Justice Court on that date.

Cops May Be Looking for Second Suspect

Flores told the newspaper that a second man is suspected to have taken part in the murder. He is still on the loose and his name has not been released, the report said.

“He’s on the run,” Flores was quoted by the Daily News. “Nobody has any idea where he is. We don’t know if anyone is looking for him.”