LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The man accused of beating his girlfriend to death at a motel near Dean Martin and Tropicana told police he woke up to find her “beaten, bloody and unconscious,” according to an arrest report obtained by 8 News Now.
On August 12, the Clark County Coroner’s Office confirmed the cause of death to be blunt force injuries to the head and neck, with the manner of death being ruled a homicide.
Justin Medof, 31, faces one count of open murder with a deadly weapon.
On July 12, the Clark County Fire Department told Metro they received a call around 8:15 a.m. regarding a “suspicious incident” at the Home2 Suites. The caller reportedly told them he woke up and found his girlfriend “beaten, bloody and dead.”
When police arrived, they observed Medof performing chest compressions on a naked woman, later identified as 30-year-old Stephanie Duarte, the report says. They took him to another room while officers and medical units continued life-saving measures. One of those officers noted the victim’s jaw was locked, and he could not perform mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Medical units experienced the same and said she appeared to be in rigor mortis.
The victim was pronounced deceased at 8:37 a.m.
According to the report, Medof recounted to police that the night before, he and his girlfriend were at the Fremont Street Experience. They reportedly got into an argument, after which he took an Uber to the hotel alone and went to sleep.
Medof said when he woke up around 8 a.m., he found his girlfriend “beaten, bloody and unconscious.” He allegedly observed the room was covered in blood and bathed the victim, in an effort to wake her.
Metro Homicide detectives obtained surveillance video and observed the suspect arriving to the motel by himself around 2:12 a.m. His girlfriend is later shown arriving by herself at 2:25 a.m.
The night auditor told police the victim asked him if there were any messages for her or if Medof had asked about her. He said neither occurred, and he did not have any interaction with the suspect.
The report says the auditor noticed the victim appeared “nervous,” then took the elevator upstairs after a few minutes.
Homicide detectives’ investigation indicates the door to room 421, where the victim and Medof were found, was last opened at 2:32 a.m. before police arrival later that morning.
Guests from a room nearby told police they heard loud noises between 2 and 3 a.m., coming from room 421. They said it was a man and woman and that it was consistent with arguing and furniture being moved, according to the report.
During evidence collection, detectives observed red marks on Medof’s rib cage, back, shoulders and knees, as well as various lacerations on his left bicep, left elbow, knees and top of his right foot.
When a crime scene analyst went to photograph the suspect, the report says he tried to cover the abrasion on his bicep, saying it was old. He reluctantly moved his hand when asked.
Medof was transported to Metro headquarters, where he told police he did not want to answer questions without his attorney present. According to the report, he asked police for two numbers from his cell phone.
He was booked into the Clark County Detention Center.
If you’d like to donate to Duarte’s memorial fund, click here. It has been set up on behalf of her family, with their permission.