A Democrat was indicted for murder Thursday in the grisly slaying last month of a Las Vegas Review-Journal reporter and ousted from office.
What are the details?
Robert Telles, 45, allegedly ambushed and killed Jeff German “willfully, unlawfully, with malice aforethought” on Sept. 2 after German penned a series of investigative articles detailing the Democrat’s alleged misconduct and unethical behavior as Clark County Public Administrator in Nevada.
Telles, removed from office by court order earlier this month, is said to have lost his primary election in June to fellow Democrat Rita Reid partly as a result of the victim’s investigative reporting.
Rita Reid told the Daily Beast that German “was willing to speak truth to power and it cost him his life.”
Telles responded to German on Twitter, writing via his now-deleted account: “Typical bully. Can’t take a pound of critism [sic] after slinging 100 pounds of BS. Up to article #4 now. You’d think he’d have better things to do.”
Prosecutors indicated that the video and DNA evidence they say implicates Telles in German’s murder is overwhelming, suggesting it was the former politician who couldn’t take criticism.
Telles, a gun-control advocate who had once written to U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) saying, “There are folks on the other side that really want us at each other’s throats,” allegedly went to German’s home and stabbed him multiple times.
If convicted, Telles may face the death penalty. Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson has yet to announce whether or not he will be seeking that sentence.
Denied bail once again on Tuesday, Telles remains in custody at the Clark County Detention Center.
Silencing the press
A murder investigation began Sept. 3 after German’s body was found outside his home, six miles away from Telles’ residence. The Clark County coroner ruled German’s death a homicide resulting from “multiple sharp force injuries.”
Three days later, the Las Vegas Metro Police Department released images of a possible suspect carrying a bag and wearing a reflective orange shirt and a broad-brimmed straw hat. The LVMPD also revealed images of a maroon GMC Yukon Denali, which had been near the crime scene around the time of the murder.
LVMPD Sheriff Joe Lombardo indicated someone had been seen driving the vehicle “suspiciously” around the neighborhood and confirmed the suspect had used it to leave the area. The vehicle depicted was a maroon GMC Yukon Denali.
Cpt. Dori Koren later noted that the vehicle was registered to Telles’ wife.
Man Found Deceased Outside of Home – Update-Photo of Suspect Vehicle
The LVMP executed a search warrant on Sept. 7 at Telles’ home and towed two vehicles, one of which was the GMC observed near the crime scene.
Telles arrived home at 2:20 p.m., hours after police had completed their search of his house.
Ignoring reporters’ questions, he shut himself inside his garage wearing “a white hazmat suit.” When a police officer knocked on the front door, Telles refused to answer.
When Telles wouldn’t open the door to police, a Las Vegas Police Department SWAT team was dispatched, which then made the arrest. Telles was taken out of his house on a stretcher.
Misappropriated funds allegation
After his arrest, Telles was stripped of his administrator position by court order. In that position he had handled the funds of people who died without a will, some of which he is alleged to have mishandled or misappropriated, hence the Nevada Supreme Court’s recent suspension of his law license.
It’s not just clients whose money Telles may have have mishandled.
According to the Review-Journal, taxpayers are on the hook for Telles’ legal fees despite the fact that he owns six properties in Nevada and Arkansas with at least $200,000 in equity, along with a Las Vegas home valued around $600,000.
While the accused murderer claimed in court Sept. 20 that he was indigent and was assigned two Clark County public defenders, the AP noted that Telles and his wife were making $20,500 per month prior to his arrest.
Telles’ arrest in September wasn’t his first.
He also was arrested for domestic violence and resisting arrest March 1, 2020. His wife, Mae Ismael, called police asking for help in light of her husband “going crazy.”
Telles allegedly grabbed his wife by the neck and struck her as they drunkenly made their way home from Bellagio casino.
Bodycam footage of the arrest shows the former office holder in an apparent drunken state. He can be heard telling police, “You guys just want to take me down because I’m a public official.”
While the domestic battery charge was later dismissed, Telles received a suspended 90-day sentence on the resisting arrest charge.
New 911 calls, body camera video show Rob Telles’ arrest for domestic violence