In Las Vegas, two teenagers appeared in adult court for a short hearing on Thursday. According to a prosecutor, the teens will be charged with murder, attempted murder, and other offences. The charges stem from a video that allegedly shows the teens intentionally crashing a stolen car into a bicyclist riding along the roadside. Tragically, the cyclist lost his life as a result of the incident.
Two teenagers, aged 18 and 16, made separate appearances before a judge who set their next court date for Tuesday in Las Vegas Justice Court. Neither of them spoke or were requested to enter a plea during the hearing. Currently, both of them are being held without bail.
According to the police, the evidence suggests that the teenagers were involved in a minimum of three hit-and-run cases on the morning of August 14th. One of these incidents resulted in the tragic death of Andreas “Andy” Probst, a 64-year-old retired former police chief from Bell, who was cycling then.
Out of consideration for their ages, The Associated Press has chosen not to disclose the names of the teenagers involved.
Each case was handled separately due to the discrepancy in age between the two individuals involved. The older of the two, 17 years old at the time, was taken into custody on charges related to a fatal hit-and-run and possession of a stolen vehicle on the day of the crashes. On the other hand, the 16-year-old was arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of murder and additional charges after a video of the bicycle crash went viral on the internet.
According to Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson, the two defendants are facing charges of open murder, attempted murder, and several other related costs. Speaking to reporters outside court, he stated that the prosecution aims to try both cases together and secure high bail pending trial. Wolfson also emphasized that the teens pose a significant threat to the community.
According to Wolfson, there is a strong connection between the events in these cases. He expressed his confidence in the consolidation of these cases.
According to prosecutors, one of the two teenage murder suspects charged with killing Andreas Rene Probst recorded a video of the Las Vegas crash that resulted in the death of the former Bell police chief.
According to Nevada law, teenagers are not eligible for the death penalty. If they are found guilty of murder in an adult court, and the crime was committed before they turned 18, the maximum sentence they could receive is 20 years to life in state prison.
The younger teen was not accompanied by a lawyer during the court proceedings. However, the older teen was represented by an attorney named David Westbrook. Despite declining to comment on the case outside the court, Westbrook confirmed that his client was arrested at 17 and turned 18 while in custody.
During the court hearing, the 16-year-old was informed by Judge Rebecca Saxe that he would have a lawyer assigned to him for his upcoming court appearance.
During Thursday’s hearing, Crystal Probst, the widow of Probst, and their daughter, Taylor Probst, were in court. However, they refrained from speaking to the reporters after the hearing. Taylor Probst had already addressed the public during a police news conference on Tuesday.
As recorded from the front passenger seat, the video captures the moment when the car approaches Probst from behind as he cycles near the curb on a road that is free of any other traffic. The male voices in the car can be heard laughing as the vehicle deliberately veers towards Probst and collides with his bicycle. The force of the impact sends Probst hurtling backwards over the hood of the car and slamming into the windshield before landing on the ground next to the curb.
According to authorities, they did not know about the video until a resource officer from a local high school brought it to their attention two weeks after the incident occurred. In their efforts to investigate the matter, the police announced on August 29th that they were actively looking for the passenger who had recorded the video.
Wolfson did not disclose on Thursday whether the police have possession of the cellphone that supposedly captured the video.
According to the authorities, the teenagers initially hit a 72-year-old bicyclist using a stolen Hyundai sedan. They fled the crime scene but then crashed into a Toyota Corolla before driving away again. Finally, their reckless driving led them to hit Probst.
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