Jose Rangel enters not guilty plea in Lesly Palacio case, invokes right to speedy trial

Local News

Jose Antonio Rangel. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Jose Rangel entered a not guilty plea on Friday to charges of destroying evidence and accessory to commit murder. His son, Erick Rangel-Ibarra, remains at large in the Lesly Palacio case.

Rangel also invoked his right to a speedy trial, starting the clock for prosecutors to prepare for an April 28 trial.

Rangel, 46, is represented by a public defender.

The case against him is based in-part on video evidence that appears to show Rangel and his son removing a body from Rangel-Ibarra’s home on the morning of Aug. 29.

Erick Rangel-Ibarra

Rangel is also seen in surveillance video spraying down the driveway in front of his son’s house.

Many court cases have been delayed during the COVID-19 pandemic, but Friday’s action resulted in an accelerated schedule for this case, with a deadline for filing motions 21 days after the transcript of today’s hearing is finished.

The case has been assigned to Clark County District Court Department 10.

Rangel-Ibarra, 25, is believed to be in Mexico. His father is accused of helping him clean up evidence of the crime, and then fleeing with him to Mexico by way of California.

The body of Palacio, 22, was found near Valley of Fire, concealed under a bush.

Palacio’s cause of death has not yet been released.

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