Las Vegas suspect asked showgirls to take photo with knife before deadly stabbings, officials say

A man accused of fatally stabbing two people and injuring six others in Las Vegas asked a group of showgirls at a hotel if they would take a picture with him and his foot-long kitchen knife before the deadly rampage, authorities said .

After arriving from California, Yoni Barrios, 32, took a bus to the Wynn Hotel and Casino on the Strip Thursday morning to inquire about a job, according to investigators. He approached the showgirls, told them he was a chef and asked if they would take a picture with him and his knife.

Barrios thought they were “laughing at him and making fun of his clothes” and allegedly stabbed at least two, according to an arrest report from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department obtained by The Times. Maris Mareen Digiovanni, 30, died from her injuries at the UMC Trauma Center.

Barrios began running after the attack and later told authorities he was looking for people to “let out the anger,” according to the police report. He is said to have attacked several people outside the hotel and fatally stabbed Brent Hallett, 47, in the back.

When the attack was over, a total of eight victims were identified, police said. Seven were taken to hospitals. Hallett was pronounced dead at the scene.

Barrios was arrested a short time later and the knife was seized, police said. He was treated for minor injuries at Sunrise Hospital and committed to the Clark County Detention Center on suspicion of two counts of murder with a deadly weapon and six counts of attempted murder with a deadly weapon.

“This was an isolated incident,” Las Vegas Metro Deputy Police Commissioner James LaRochelle said in a news release Thursday. “All the evidence points to Barrios acting alone and there are no prominent suspects at this time.”

Barrios reportedly appeared in court Friday afternoon at the Regional Justice Center in Las Vegas. The judge did not set bail; Barrios is scheduled to appear at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday

According to Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo, the victims appeared to be a combination of locals and tourists.

A showgirl who survived the attack told police Barrios approached her, Digiovanni and another showgirl and asked if they would take a picture with him and his knife, according to the police report. When the woman became uncomfortable and backed away, Barrios reportedly attacked her and stabbed her in the back. She also saw Barrios charging at Digiovanni, police said. The woman managed to escape and make her way back to Wynn, where she remained until transferred to the UMC Trauma Center.

Another knife victim said he was walking with his wife near the Wynn on the Strip when he saw Barrios holding a knife and running towards him, according to the police report. The man said Barrios walked past him and said “Sorry man” before allegedly stabbing him in the back. He screamed for help while his wife put pressure on his wound.

Barrios arrived from California two days before the attacks and went to the Strip after a friend told him he couldn’t stay at his home, according to the police report. Barrios had asked a janitor at the hotel to get in touch with immigration so he could return home to Guatemala. He also told a security guard he was trying to sell knives so he could make money to get back home, police said.

“We want to offer our deepest condolences to the families of the victims and to the victims themselves,” LaRochelle said. “This is clearly a very tragic and difficult to understand … murder investigation that deeply affects our community.”

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-10-07/las-vegas-stabbing-suspect-asked-showgirls-to-take-photo-with-a-knife-moments-before-attack-that-killed-2 Las Vegas suspect asked showgirls to take photo with knife before deadly stabbings, officials say

Alley Einstein

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