Death penalty off table in killing at Stateline casino | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Death penalty off table in killing at Stateline casino

Kurt Hildebrand
khildebrand@recordcourier.com

Jose Rodriguez-Quezada

A transient accused of killing a Reno man in a Stateline hotel room won’t face the death penalty.

Jose Rodriguez-Quezada was arraigned in Douglas County District Court on Tuesday.

Rodriguez-Quezada entered a not-guilty plea and a 10-day trial was set for Oct. 24 through Nov. 8.

He is accused of stabbing or slashing Reno resident Kevin Leroy Edwards, 56, 30 times, leaving Edwards’ body in a blood-smeared room at the Lake Tahoe Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.

District Judge Tod Young said he would appoint a co-counsel to aid defense attorney Matthew Ence.

Prosecutor Ric Casper said his office had been working with federal officials to have Rodriguez-Quezada come back to Douglas to face the charges. Rodriguez-Quezada, a previously deported felon, is in the U.S. illegally.

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Rodriguez-Quezada was arrested Nov. 20 near the ranch operated by the University of Nevada, Reno, on East McCarran Boulevard after police discovered he had a concealed weapon.

The Douglas County grand jury returned an indictment for Edwards’ murder on Jan. 10.