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A Caesars Palace hostage standoff, fugitive warrant and threatening texts to mom: Who is Matthew Mannix?

Matthew Mattix prompted a five-hour standoff with Las Vegas police when he took a woman hostage in a Caesars Palace hotel room. The dramatic scene led to fresh charges on a very long rap sheet, Andrea Blanco reports

Thursday 13 July 2023 17:35 BST
Las Vegas Casino Hostage
Las Vegas Casino Hostage (LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL)

The famous Caesars Palace on the Las Vegas strip was thrown into chaos this week when a domestic disturbance inside a room escalated into a hostage situation.

For more than five hours on 11 July, crisis negotiators, Las Vegas Police Department officers and a SWAT team attempted to breach the room on the 21st floor of the hotel where a woman was being held hostage, amid threats from her alleged captor that he “had a magazine full of rounds” and “would pull the trigger.”

Throughout the altercation, the suspect also threw large objects out of the window that could then be seen descending onto the pool deck below. Guests enjoying the sunny weather suddenly found themselves sheltering from the pieces of furniture and running for safety.

Law enforcement finally arrested the suspect, identified as 35-year-old fugitive Matthew Mannix, at 2.40pm PDT — but no firearms were recovered from the room. Records later revealed that Mannix allegedly threatened his landlord with a weapon in his home state of Colorado days before going on a drug binge that induced an episode of schizophrenia and led to the dramatic events on Tuesday, police said.

Mannix, who has a long criminal history of making threats against several individuals — including his mother, is now facing five fresh charges in Las Vegas. It is unclear if there are plans to extradite him to Colorado, where he is charged with being a previous offender in possession of a weapon, probation violation and theft.

Here’s everything we know about the case:

Hostage situation

Employees at Caesars Palace first tried to check on the guests after receiving several complaints of noise coming out of room 2128, which they believed to be a domestic dispute.

When security approached the room, they reportedly found a man believed to be Mannix barricaded inside and threatening to “shoot someone” if police tried to breach the room. The threats continued and at some point, a female also yelled that the man “had a knife.”

Las Vegas Police, a SWAT team and medical responders arrived at the scene to handle the hostage situation. Mannix reportedly refused to let the 26-year-old woman out of the room and continued to open and close the door while allegedly threatening to “pull the trigger.”

A person looks out a broken window on a hotel tower at Caesars Palace hotel-casino, Tuesday, July 11, 2023, in Las Vegas (Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

The woman eventually attempted to reach the door, but Mannix then allegedly dragged her to the bed “as he body slammed her ... and began to have intercourse with her.”

Mannix is also accused of throwing objects out of the window of his hotel room, sending guests on the pool deck running for cover. Bystander video showed broken glass and debris littering various decks at the Caesars as guests ran for safety.

A video posted to Twitter showed security guards duck for cover as a television fell to the ground behind them. Meanwhile, North Carolina real estate broker Alyssa Hellman told The Independent she was at the Caesars Palace pool with her wife when she heard a loud bang at about 1.30pm PDT.

Furniture thrown out of Ceasars palace window as police respond to hostage situation

She said she looked up to see that a window had been broken and a man inside started throwing furniture out onto the concourse.

“We heard a bang and then one of the windows was broken open, and the guy was throwing things out. Lamps, a TV and a minibar. He’s drawn the curtains now,” Ms Hellman said at the time.

Ms Hellman said guests were evacuated from the pool area, but staff did not explain what was going on.

Videos from bystanders showed hotel guests running for safety as debris rained down from above.

“When we saw the window shatter it was kind of a surreal feeling, it got pretty scary,” Beverly Blackwell, 56, of Chattanooga, Tennessee, told the Associated Press. “We were told to gather our stuff and rush out the back.”

An investigator noted that the pool deck was left littered with furniture and glass and the property damage inside the room was “some of the most severe I have seen in my 18 years as a detective.” The damage caused is estimated to be upwards of $50,000.

Suspect is taken into custody

Mannix was finally taken into custody five hours after authorities responded to the hostage situation.

This booking photo provided by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department shows Matthew John Ermond Mannix, of Golden, Colorado

He reportedly told investigators during questioning that the victim was his “girlfriend and he loved her” and that “he would pay for everything that he damaged.”

“[Mannix] was so high that he was paranoid and had a schizophrenic episode where he was yelling random comments and numbers and saying that he would pay for everything because he has a lot of money,” the affidavit for his arrest read.

Police and emergency vehicles are staged at Caesars Palace hotel-casino Tuesday, July 11, 2023, in Las Vegas (Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Mannix’s previous criminal history

According to the probable cause affidavit in Las Vegas, Mannix has four protection orders against him out of Colorado.

Mannix also has an outstanding warrant in his home state. The warrant stemmed from Mr Mannix allegedly threatening his landlord “not to mess with him” because he was “a killer” and a “hunter,” according to Jefferson County court records obtained by FOX 31.

The landlord also told law enforcement that Mannix was in possession of a firearm, which led to four weapons being seized from his home. Due to his previous criminal history, which includes four protection orders against him, he is barred from owning any type of firearm.

Four weapons were seized from his home. The report also notes that Mannix called another man and told him he would “take him out.”

Matthew John Ermond Mannix, 35, who was arrested after he was accused of taking a woman hostage for more than five hours (LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL)

His ex-girlfriend told police that he reportedly also had her two firearms.

Mannix was contacted by the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office over the phone but failed to meet with deputies, prompting law enforcement to issue a fugitive warrant.

In 2017, Mannix also faced charges in Greenwich, Connecticut, for allegedly sending threats to his mother when she refused to give him money. According to the New Haven Register, he allegedly texted his mother in a “harassing manner” and initiated a countdown for her to send the money.

He claimed in an interview to have anger issues and said he would seek therapy.

“I just started a small business and I was very proud of that, and I wanted to tell her about it but for some reason she ignored me. Like I said before, I didn’t deal with it effectively. That resentment built up and I had a weak moment,” he told News 12 Connecticut at the time.

What comes next?

In Las Vegas, Mannix was charged with kidnapping in the first degree, coercion with force, destroying property, resisting arrest without a firearm and disregard for the safety of a person.

Matthew John Ermond Mannix, 35, who was arrested after he was accused of taking a woman hostage for more than five hours Tuesday and claiming that he had a gun, according to his police arrest report, appears in court during his initial appearance at the Regional Justice Center, on Wednesday, July 12, 2023, in Las Vegas (AP)

He appeared in court on 12 July and his bail was set at $750,000.

Mannix is being held at the Clark County Detention Center and it is unclear whether law enforcement in Colorado plans to request his extradition.

The Independent has reached out to Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department.

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