LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A man accused of murdering a local model and stuffing her body into an enclosure in the desert, is expected to appear in court this week. Christopher Prestipino posted a $500,000 bond last week, but jail records show he is still at the Clark County Detention Center.
The I-Team learned it takes time to process house arrest, but there are concerns about when exactly Prestipino will be released. The 46-year-old is accused of killing 24-year old Esemeralda Gonzales. Metro Police said he injected her with a pool cleaner and put her body in a structure in a desert area.
Before Prestipino’s arrest, police said he went to Belize. He also had access to financial resources to post the half a million dollar bond.
The I-Team recently interviewed Assemblyman Ozzie Fumo, who’s also a longtime criminal defense attorney. He’s pushed for bail reform in Nevada so that there is more of an even playing field despite the defendant’s economic position.
“If we can look at alternatives to cash bail, something like house arrest and things like that, we’re gonna save the taxpayers of Nevada millions of dollars, but that is a case in point,” Fumo said. “If you have the resources, it doesn’t matter what your crime is, you can be on the streets. He’s no less dangerous than a poor person, but the poor person just will never be able to afford it.'”
Vanessa Murphy, I-Team Reporter: “What about that concern that someone who has a murder case against them will not return? Maybe gets a fake passport and leaves the country?
Fumo: “I mean, in my practice, in my experience, it is very, very rare that something like that does happen. People do want to have their day in court.”
Prestipino is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday at 9:30 a.m.