weather icon Clear

Jury sentences man in Cathedral Canyon torture, killing case

A Pahrump jury sentenced a man to life in prison for his role in torturing and killing a 27-year-old Las Vegas man in the Nye County desert nearly two years ago.

Brad Mehn, 39, was found guilty Tuesday of first-degree murder with a deadly weapon and kidnapping with a deadly weapon in the killing of Roy Jaggers, whose body was found on Aug. 1, 2021, at the bottom of Cathedral Canyon, a former desert roadside attraction about 50 miles from Las Vegas. Mehn was accused of torturing Jaggers with Mehn’s ex-girlfriend, 29-year-old Heather Pate, and her current boyfriend, 37-year-old Kevin Dent.

Both Pate and Dent took plea deals in April, avoiding first-degree murder charges and testifying against Mehn during the trial.

The jury on Thursday sentenced Mehn to life in prison without the possibility of parole, according to Mehn’s defense attorney, Thomas Gibson. A judge is set to sentence Mehn on the kidnapping charge on Aug. 3.

Gibson declined to comment further on the case on Friday.

Prosecutors have said Jaggers was tortured for hours at a Pahrump gun range before Pate, Dent and Mehn took him to Cathedral Canyon, stripped him of his clothes and forced him to walk off a cliff.

Mehn then shot Jaggers him repeatedly with a shotgun, prosecutors said, although Mehn claimed during the trial that it was Pate who shot Jaggers.

Dent has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, and Pate pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and a first-degree kidnapping charge. They are scheduled to appear for a sentencing hearing on June 22.

During closing arguments at Mehn’s trial, prosecutors argued that Mehn deliberately brought the tools and weapons used to torture Jaggers, including a belt, baton, bayonet, stapler, pistol, axe, blowtorch and shotgun.

Prosecutors said Pate and Dent had lured Jaggers to Pate’s apartment and beat him because they believed Jaggers had harmed one of Pate’s children. When Pate called Mehn from Las Vegas, Mehn told her to bring Jaggers to Nye County, prosecutors said.

Jaggers was Pate’s neighbor who frequently watched her children, his mother, Kassy Robinson has said. Robinson told the Review-Journal in April that during prior court hearings, prosecutors said police found no evidence Jaggers had hurt one of the kids.

During closing arguments, Senior Deputy District Attorney Jason Gunnell said Mehn had helped beat and torture Jaggers after taking Pate’s word that something had happened, “without any evidence.”

Contact Katelyn Newberg at knewberg@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0240. Follow @k_newberg on Twitter.

UPDATE: Pahrump judge Michele Fiore faces federal wire fraud charges

Prosecutors allege that the Nye County judge and former Las Vegas City Council member spent money meant for a fallen officers memorial on herself and her daughter’s wedding.

Election Day 2024: What to know

Tuesday marks voters’ last chance to cast their ballot in Nevada’s primary election.

EDITORIAL: A retail theft conspiracy?

Many on the left accuse greedy capitalists at major outlets of exaggerating the problem to cover up mismanagement.

Dutch visitor dies while driving in Death Valley

The approximately 70-year-old man and his wife were visiting from Holland. The man went unconscious while driving on Artist’s Drive. His wife stopped the vehicle safely and moved her husband to the back seat.