Noise complaint, smell of pot alerts security to party involving gang members at Rio hotel

Local News

Metro Police released mugshots Monday of the nine people arrested at the Rio Hotel-Casino on numerous different chargers.  According to police, the group of documented gang members were cuffed after officers broke up a large party.  

The arrests took place Saturday night, Aug. 18. There were around 40 people at the party.

Five weapons were also confiscated, Metro said.

Police took the following people into custody: Antron Simms, Steven Neal, Michael Green, Phillip Semper, Corey Johnson, Jerome Francis, Ashley Medlock, Lexus Sherman and Antonio Williams.  Johnson and Williams were both arrested for carrying a concealed weapon. The other seven had active warrants for their arrests for charges unrelated to this incident.

“They’re documented gang members that pose a significant risk to the safety of the community,” said Capt. John Pelletier, Metro Police.

Capt. Pelletier says noise complaints and the smell of marijuana tipped off hotel security to the 40-person party.

“The Central Intelligence Unit, as well as the Gang Unit; we got some information this time that there was a potential party on the Strip, the security partners ended up finding where that party was,” he said.

This time around, it was training and observation that led authorities to the bust. However, the idea of trying to detect guns in casinos has been a work in progress for some time now.

Since last April, Canadian company Patriot One has been testing a microwave concealed weapon detection system at the Westgate.  Just a few months ago, the company demonstrated how the technology works. It can be installed near doors or in this mock-up of a hotel front desk.

“The system will tell us if you have a gun on you,” said Jeanault Lasnier, Patriot One.  [Computer alert beeps] (man pulls out gun) “Alright, the system says you have a gun.”

But whether it’s high-tech detection or good old-fashioned police work, officers hope this bust sends a message.

“We’re not going to tolerate that kind of activity coming here on the Strip,” said Capt. Pelletier.

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