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Man, woman receive life sentences in Pahrump torture killing

A man and woman involved in the torture and killing of a 27-year-old Las Vegas man nearly two years ago have been sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

Roy Jaggers’ body was found on Aug. 1, 2021, at the bottom of Cathedral Canyon, a former desert roadside attraction off the Tecopa Highway near Pahrump. Prosecutors have said his neighbor, 29-year-old Heather Pate, lured Jaggers to her Las Vegas apartment with the help of her boyfriend, 38-year-old Kevin Dent.

Pate and Dent were accused of kidnapping Jaggers and driving him to Nye County, where they met up with Pate’s ex-boyfriend, 39-year-old Brad Mehn. The three then tortured Jaggers for hours before taking him to Cathedral Canyon, where prosecutors said Jaggers was forced to walk off a cliff before Mehn shot him repeatedly with a shotgun.

During a sentencing hearing Thursday, Pate was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 15 years, and Dent was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole in 10 years, according to Nye County District Attorney Brian Kunzi.

“While two of the participants in this appalling set of events may be eligible for parole, I agree with the judge’s assessment that they should expect to be in prison for a considerable period of time,” Kunzi said in an emailed statement Friday.

Pate and Dent took plea deals in April and testified against Mehn during a trial in May. Pate pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and a first-degree kidnapping charge, while Dent pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.

Mehn’s trial ended with the jury convicting him of first-degree murder with a deadly weapon and kidnapping with a deadly weapon. The jury sentenced him to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Prosecutors have said that Pate and Dent lured Jaggers to Pate’s apartment and beat him because they believed Jaggers had harmed one of Pate’s children.

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

In his emailed statement Friday, Kunzi said that Pate and Dent were the ones who “initiated the chain of events” that ended in Jaggers’ gruesome murder.

During closing arguments of Mehn’s trial, prosecutors accused him of helping to torture and beat Jaggers and taking Pate’s word that something had happened, “without any evidence.”

Mehn was also accused of deliberately bringing the tools and weapons used to torture Jaggers when he met up with Pate and Dent in Nye County. They included a belt, baton, bayonet, stapler, pistol, axe, blowtorch and shotgun, prosecutors said.

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

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