weather icon Clear

Man charged in NHP Sgt. killing, faces additional charges

The man arrested in the killing of a Nevada Highway Patrol officer is facing additional charges, according to the Nye County District Attorney’s Office.

As stated in a news release on Wednesday, May 20, District Attorney Chris Arabia said his office has charged John Dabritz with four felony counts relating to the unlawful possession of explosive or incendiary devices.

Dabritz is also potentially facing the death penalty in White Pine County for the murder of Nevada Highway Patrol Sergeant Ben Jenkins on March 27, 2020.

“The killing of Sergeant Ben Jenkins was an unimaginably horrible thing and we are confident that the White Pine County DA’s office will continue to do an excellent job with that case,” Arabia said. “Still, these charges in Nye County are serious and we have an obligation to take appropriate action against someone who would flout the law and the unthinkable matter that he has.”

The release went on to state that just prior to the killing of Jenkins, authorities discovered that Dabritz possessed three illegal explosive devices, along with a fourth device, which was detonated by gunshot fire from a distance, at Dabritz’s residence in Tybo, Nevada, according to the criminal complaint.

In Nye County, Dabritz faces three counts of unlawful possession of a component of an explosive or incendiary device with intent to manufacture an explosive or incendiary device, which are category “B” felonies.

The maximum penalty for each of the three counts is one to six years imprisonment and a $5,000 fine.

Dabritz, according to the release, also faces one count of unlawful possession of an explosive or incendiary device in or near certain public or private areas, which is a category “D” felony.

The maximum penalty for that count is one to four years imprisonment and a $5,000 fine.

During the investigation of Dabritz, authorities discovered information leading to Kelvin Laird, who was charged with carrying concealed weapons, a category “C” felony with maximums of one to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

On March 27, at approximately 5:54 a.m., Sgt. Jenkins stopped to check on Dabritz, whose vehicle was parked along a remote stretch of U.S. 93, according to authorities.

Shortly thereafter, Dabritz shot Jenkins, and stripped him of his uniform and firearm, leading to a four-hour manhunt involving at least five Nevada law enforcement agencies and the Utah Highway Patrol.

Dabritz was arrested near Cherry Creek, Nevada roughly 18 miles south from the scene of the shooting.

“Because Dabritz is facing a possible death penalty prosecution in White Pine County, it is unknown at this time when he will appear in Tonopah Justice Court,” the release stated.

Contact reporter Selwyn Harris at sharris@pvtimes.com. On Twitter: @pvtimes

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
UNR scientists make key advance in X-ray images

A team of scientists, led by University of Nevada, Reno’s Hiroshi Sawada, an associate professor of physics, demonstrated that numerical modeling accurately reproduces X-ray images using laser-produced X-rays. The images were obtained using the university’s chirped pulse amplification-based 50-terawatt Leopard laser at their Zebra Pulsed Power Lab.

Studies determine shutdown saved millions

Two separate research studies determined that shutdown orders prevented about 60 million coronavirus infections in the United States and saved about 3.1 million lives in 11 European countries.

Bicyclist dies after being struck by vehicle

A Pahrump man is dead after being struck by a vehicle while riding a bicycle Friday evening, July 3rd.

Camp Fire of 2018 leads to new wildfire research

Moved by the tragedy of the 2018 Camp Fire, a team of engineers and scientists are coming together in a new five-year project to develop a comprehensive computational, live digital platform to predict and monitor wildfire risk that can be used by wildfire managers, emergency responders and utility companies to plan for, respond to and remediate wildfires.

Pahrump man, 20, faces murder, 3 other charges

The Nye County District Attorney’s Office has charged Nick VonAlst with murder and armed robbery in connection with an incident that occurred in northern Pahrump during the early morning hours of June 24.

Extension of census deadline provides more time for scams

With the deadline to respond the 2020 census extended until fall, scammers continue to target Nevadans around the county, including phishing emails and text messages, individuals claiming to be with the U.S. Census Bureau, approaching the doors of residents and asking for sensitive information such as Social Security numbers and credit card information, or by mailing fake census forms to unsuspecting residents that ask for sensitive information.

4 UNLV athletes test positive for coronavirus

Voluntary workouts on campus are now suspended until July 5 at the earliest, the school announced.

Registration drive aims at less-frequent voters

The Voter Participation Center and its partner group, the Center for Voter Information, are mailing 390,237 voter registration applications to people in Nevada this month as part of their largest-ever campaign to register voters.