Jul 01, 2020
Arizona man gets 13 months in Vegas shooting ammunition case
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LAS VEGAS (AP) — An Arizona man was sentenced Tuesday to 13 months in federal prison for selling home-loaded bullets to the gunman who unleashed the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, killing 58 people in the Las Vegas Strip in October 2017.
Douglas Haig, 57, also was sentenced to three years of supervised release for his guilty plea last November to manufacturing ammunition without a license, said Trisha Young, spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Nicholas Trutanich.
Defense attorney Marc Victor said U.S. District Judge James Mahan granted his request to let prison officials consider home confinement for Haig because of the coronavirus pandemic. Haig is scheduled to surrender to prison authorities in October.
Haig was not accused of a direct role in the shooting, which involved a 64-year-old retired accountant and high-stakes video poker player firing military-style weapons modified to shoot more rapidly from a 32nd-floor hotel window into a concert crowd below.
The gunman, Stephen Paddock, killed himself before police reached him in a suite at the Mandalay Bay resort. Police and the FBI determined Paddock meticulously planned the attack and acted alone. They theorized he may have sought notoriety, but said they never determined a clear motive for the attack.
Haig acknowledged making tracer and armor-piercing bullets at a home workshop in Mesa, Arizona, and selling them at gun shows and on the internet. He used the business name Specialized Military Ammunition. Tracers illuminate the path of fired bullets.
“Doug had no knowledge of what Paddock was planning to do,” Victor said Monday.
Haig’s fingerprints were found on unfired bullets in Paddock’s hotel suite, and ammunition also bore tool marks consistent with Haig’s reloading equipment, authorities said. Haig’s address was on a box that police found near Paddock’s body.
Authorities did not say if ammunition made by Haig was used in the shooting.
Victor said he believed Haig — as the only person prosecuted following the massacre — was treated more harshly by prosecutors than ammunition hobbyists who might receive cease-and-desist warnings for similar activities.
Haig acknowledged that he had no license to disassemble, remanufacture and reload bullets.
As a convicted felon, Haig now cannot possess weapons or ammunition.
His plea avoided a trial at which he could have faced up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Victor argued for months that Haig could not be fairly judged by a jury in trauma-scarred Las Vegas. But he lost bids to get the case dismissed; move it to Phoenix or Reno; draw jurors from throughout Nevada; or have the judge hear the case from the bench himself instead of a jury.
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Former Bernie Sanders campaign staffer says in lawsuit she was demoted after cancer treatment
Susie Shannon, who served as the campaign's political director in the state, filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court on Friday claiming that "outrageous and compassionless conduct" by the Vermont senator's team led to her "forced resignation solely because she had the misfortune of being diagnosed with ovarian cancer that required major surgery to treat the disease."
Micha Star Liberty, Shannon's lawyer, told NBC News that her client declined to sign a non-disclosure agreement from the campaign in exchange for money and two months of health insurance. A spokesman for the Sanders campaign, Mike Casca, said, "We've not received this lawsuit, and we don't comment on litigation."
The lawsuit seeks unspecified money damages.
The lawsuit says Shannon was diagnosed in September 2019, only months after accepting the role with the campaign, and she had "approximately 15 inches of tumors from the ovaries that extended into her abdominal area" that were removed on Oct. 7.
One day after the surgery, the suit says, Shannon got a phone call from Rafael Navar, the campaign's state director, who said she had been demoted.
"Navar bluntly stated that he had no confidence in her ability to do her job given her cancer and surgery and that he was bringing in someone else to do her job," the suit says. Shannon then went to Navar's supervisor, Chuck Rocha, but Rocha "casually responded that he supported Navar in whatever decision he decided to make."
The lawsuit says Shannon also reported Navar to the campaign's human resources director, who "never did" address her concerns. The lawsuit also claims Navar "continuously scolded" and "undermined" her even after she performed her duties "fully and successfully."
Navar denied the allegations, labeling them "completely false," and said Shannon's "position never changed."News Bernie Sanders 2020 Elections Cancer Campaigns Law