A former Nevada elected official accused of killing a journalist who exposed corruption in his office tells a Las Vegas television station that he “was framed.”
Las Vegas Review-Journal investigative journalists Jeff German, 69, was found stabbed to death outside his home on September 3. Investigators found evidence — including DNA under German’s fingernails — pointing to former Clark County Public Administrator Robert Telles, as CrimeOnline previously reported.
German had written about issues in Telles’s office — including an alleged affair he had with a staffer — which led to Telles losing the Democratic primary for reelection.
Telles has now apparently fired his attorney, according to KLAS, and requested an interview with the station.
“I need to say that I’m innocent and I was framed,” he said from his jail cell.
He indicated that a possible motive for framing him for murder was an issue he was working on while still in office: a scam in which people tried to obtain properties of a deceased individual before the families could do so. KLAS confirmed that such a case was under investigation.
In his interview, however, Telles had offered no evidence that he was framed except to say that he was framed. There was “a vehicle that looks like mine” near German’s home on the night of the murder, and clothing worn by a person seen on surveillance video near the journalist’s home was “planted” at his home.
“As far as any other evidence goes, as far as when it may have been planted, I couldn’t say,” Telles said. “Again, I know it’s an incredible story. But that is the story.”
Telles insisted his version was “the truth.”
“I’m coming out with the truth because I’ve had to sit and wait for some time to speak out just because my counsel advised I shouldn’t say anything whatsoever,” he said.
According to KLAS, Telles’s previous attorney filed in court on Friday that the jailed official “would like to represent himself in proper person and has asked counsel to withdraw from representation.”
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[Featured image: Jeff German/Wikicommons, left, and Robert Telles/Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department]