LAS VEGAS – The suspect in the stabbing deaths of a Vietnamese tour group operator and a male tour employee at a Las Vegas Strip casino-hotel was arrested Thursday in California.
Julius Trotter was arrested after a car chase in Chino, California, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said in an email. The arrest came the day after police in Las Vegas said they were seeking a man in his late 20s with a tattoo just below the neckline.
Police have characterized the killings of Sang Boi Nghia and Khoung Ba Le Nguyen as a robbery-murder. They were found dead Friday in a room of the Circus-Circus casino-hotel.
Police Lt. Ray Spencer said the attack probably happened about the time someone reported hearing arguing in a room on the 21st floor of the hotel.
Elevator security video showed a man going to the top floor of the hotel just after 4 a.m. and again about 45 minutes later wearing a backpack that police said belonged to Nguyen.
Nghia's daughter, Chau Nghia, has said her mother owned a tour business in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and Nguyen was a tour employee. Police said the tour group arrived May 31 in Las Vegas from Los Angeles.
Police were summoned the following day after hotel security went to the room at the request of tour members worried that the two didn't show up for a trip to the Grand Canyon.
Hotel owner MGM Resorts International issued a statement hailing the arrest in what it called a horrendous crime.
Brian Ahern, spokesman for MGM Resorts, said he did not immediately know if the $10,000 reward offered by the company played a role in Trotter's arrest.
Eimiller said Trotter, 31, is being held at a jail in San Bernardino County, California. Jail records did not list an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
Trotter pleaded guilty last year in Las Vegas and was sentenced to five years of probation for felony resisting of a police officer with a weapon in a case that had a felony reckless driving charge dismissed.
A lawyer who represented him in that case said Thursday he had no recent contact with Trotter.