(Deletes 9th paragraph to remove reference to photos released
by the Las Vegas police department. Reuters could not confirm
the identity of the woman shown in two photos.)
By Dan Whitcomb
Feb 26 Police identified a 22-year-old woman on
Tuesday as a "person of interest" in the slaying of an aspiring
rapper who was shot and killed while driving his Maserati on the
Las Vegas strip and for the deaths of two more people in a fiery
crash that ensued.
Las Vegas police said Tineesha Lashun Howard was riding in a
black Range Rover with prime suspect Ammar Harris when he opened
fire on the Maserati being driven by 27-year-old Kenneth Wayne
Cherry Jr. before dawn on Thursday.
Cherry, who performed under the name "Kenny Clutch," was
mortally wounded and his silver sports car veered out of
control, colliding with a taxicab in an intersection at the
heart of the strip, near several casino resort hotels.
Harris, 26, has been the subject of a multistate manhunt
since the incident, and police say he has a long criminal
history that includes arrests for robbery, sexual assault,
kidnapping and soliciting prostitution.
Police believe Harris is "involved in the sex trade," said
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police spokesman Officer Bill Cassell.
Harris is described as having several tattoos, including a
large black-eyed owl on his neck and small heart on his upper
Police officials described Howard as a "missing and possibly
endangered individual" from the Miami area.
"She's listed as a missing person," Cassell said. "How she
went missing is part of the Miami Police Department's
The Range Rover used in the shooting, which bore paper
dealer plates, has been impounded by police, but officials have
not said where they found the luxury sport utility vehicle. No
weapons were recovered from inside.
Earlier on Tuesday, Las Vegas taxicab companies pledged
$35,000 toward a reward fund for information leading to the
arrest and conviction of Harris.
Authorities say the dramatic shooting in a busy intersection
of the desert resort city may have stemmed from a verbal
altercation in the valet area of the Aria Resort and Casino a
few blocks away on the Strip.
The incident took place less than a mile from where rapper
Tupac Shakur was fatally shot in September 1996 while riding in
a BMW with Death Row Records co-founder Marion "Suge" Knight
after the two men had attended a Mike Tyson boxing match.
Shakur, 25, was hit by gunfire from at least one assailant
in a Cadillac while sitting in Knight's car at the intersection
of Flamingo Road and Koval Lane and died six days later at a
hospital. His murder remains unsolved.
(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Cynthia Johnston,
Bernard Orr and Lisa Shumaker)