Vegas gunman had been interviewed over possible threat, authorities say
Send a link to a friend
[June 12, 2014]
By Alexia Shurmur
LAS VEGAS (Reuters) - A gunman who teamed
up with his wife to kill two Las Vegas police officers and an armed
bystander in a weekend attack had earlier made comments to a motor
vehicles office that were interpreted as a threat, but he was not
arrested in that case, police said on Wednesday.
The couple, Jerad and Amanda Miller, who police said harbored
anti-government and white supremacist views, gunned down the two
policemen as they ate lunch on Sunday, then made their way to a
nearby Walmart store where they killed an armed bystander who tried
to stop them, authorities said.
Jerad Miller, 31, came to the attention of police in Nevada when he
and his 22-year-old wife entered the state this year, after moving
there from Indiana, Assistant Clark County Sheriff Kevin McMahill
told a news conference.
Police pulled Jerad Miller over at a checkpoint as he entered
Nevada, and they confiscated his driver's license because it had
been suspended in Indiana, McMahill said.
Afterwards, the Southern Nevada Joint Terrorism Task Force was
notified Jerad Miller had told someone at the Indiana Bureau of
Motor Vehicles he would shoot anyone who tried to arrest him for
driving with a suspended license, McMahill said.
The task force in February sent detectives to interview him, but he
denied making a direct threat to shoot anyone, McMahill said.
"At that point, our detectives made a determination that probable
cause for an arrest did not exist at that time," McMahill said.
Las Vegas police initially said the couple - wounded and surrounded
by police - had died in an apparent murder-suicide after the wife
shot her husband multiple times before turning the gun on herself.
[to top of second column]
But police said on Wednesday that Jerad Miller was killed by police,
and cited as a source of possible confusion surveillance footage
that appeared to show Amanda Miller raise her gun toward her husband
just after he was shot. Amanda Miller shot herself seconds later,
Investigators have not found any links between the couple and
extremist groups, and McMahill said police believe the pair worked
Police said the Millers had expressed support in social media for
renegade Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, whose property was the scene
of a high-profile April standoff between federal agents and Bundy
supporters over a forced round-up of his cattle from public land.
The Bundy family said on Tuesday the Millers were at the protest
site for a few days but were asked to leave after other
demonstrators expressed concern about Jerad's "aggressive nature and
(Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis and Robert Birsel)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.