Two people were killed and several others injured in a reportedly unprovoked stabbing Thursday morning near the Wynn Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip, authorities said.
Officers received a report of a stabbing with multiple victims outside a casino in the 3100 block of South Las Vegas Boulevard at approximately 11:42 a.m., the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said in a tweet.
Eight victims have been identified and one suspect has been taken into custody, authorities said. The suspect, identified as Yoni Barrios, 32, was held at the Clark County Detention Center on suspicion of two counts of open murder with a deadly weapon and six counts of attempted murder with a deadly weapon, police say .
“This was an isolated incident,” Las Vegas Metro Police Deputy Chief James LaRochelle said in a news release late Thursday. “All evidence points to Barrios acting alone and there are no outstanding suspects at this time.”
The victims appeared to be a combination of tourists and locals, Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo said.
As of 2 p.m., two people were dead and three were in critical condition, Las Vegas Metro Police Captain Dori Koren said at a press briefing outside the Wynn Casino.
A kitchen knife was found at the scene.
“The initial stabbing occurs on the sidewalk [and] seems unprovoked,” LaRochelle said at a press conference. “There is no prior altercation.”
The suspect fled the scene heading south before heading east on Sands Avenue, pursued by “concerned citizens”, some of whom were contacting police.
The suspect was eventually arrested by a security guard and Las Vegas police officers.
Dewaun Turner, 47, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that he saw five of the stab wounds while returning home from work at Resorts World, a hotel and casino just north of the crime scene.
Turner said he saw a man with a knife chase two showgirls who were screaming for help, according to the Review-Journal.
After one of the performers slipped and fell, the man stabbed her, Turner said. The man then jumped up and stabbed the other showgirl as she tried to run away, he said.
The first showgirl who was stabbed was bleeding profusely, Turner told the Review-Journal, and the second appeared to be less severely injured as she tried to apply pressure to stop the first woman’s bleeding.
“He wasn’t saying anything,” Turner told the Review-Journal of the suspect, whom he allegedly saw stabbing a man and two other women after the showgirls.
“We want to express our sincere 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, difficult to understand, that has a profound impact on our community.”
“It’s very difficult in one-off events like this to prevent it from happening without any intelligence that it could happen,” Lombardo said.
The investigation is ongoing, police said.