1 killed in Las Vegas casino parking garage blast

/ Source: The Associated Press

One man was killed and another person escaped injury Monday in an explosion of a small device left atop a vehicle outside a Las Vegas Strip resort, authorities said.

Police said the blast was not a terrorist act, but an apparent murder of a hotel employee.

"We believe the victim of this event was the intended target," said Officer Bill Cassell, a Las Vegas police spokesman, who called the victim an employee of the Luxor hotel-casino. The person who narrowly escaped injury was also a hotel employee, Cassell said.

Gordon Absher, a spokesman for MGM Mirage Inc., which owns the Luxor, said he could not confirm the person killed was an employee.

The explosive blew up as the man who was killed attempted to remove it from the top of his car a little after 4 a.m., Cassell said. He was pronounced dead at a hospital.

The explosion occurred on the second floor of a parking structure behind the Luxor.

Cassell declined to describe the device, but said initial reports that it was a backpack were wrong.

Another person who was with the man escaped injury, Cassell said. He declined to describe the gender of that person.

"This was not a terrorist event," Cassell said, characterizing the explosion as small and saying that no threat was made against the Luxor or against the employees.

Exotic homicide, police say
There was little damage around the vehicle and the hotel was not evacuated, police and a hotel official said.

Cassell said the case was being investigated as "a homicide with an unusual weapon."

The Luxor, a pyramid-shaped hotel at the south end of the Las Vegas Strip, has more than 4,000 rooms and 6,000 employees.

Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents were involved in the investigation, said ATF Special Agent Nina Delgadillo, regional spokeswoman for the agency in San Francisco.

Aerial video from news helicopters showed no apparent damage to the parking structure, where entrances were blocked while police, firefighters and ATF agents went from vehicle to vehicle with bomb-sniffing dogs.