NewsNationalScripps News

Ex-Congressional candidate wanted in Las Vegas murder turns self in

Dan Rodimer surrendered to authorities in connection to the death of Chris Tapp — who spent 21 years in prison for a murder he didn't commit.
Ex-Congressional candidate wanted in Las Vegas murder turns self in
Posted at 12:56 PM, Mar 07, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-07 12:56:33-05

A former Nevada Congressional candidate and ex-professional wrestler has been arrested in connection to a murder on the Las Vegas Strip.

Dan Rodimer, 45, turned himself in Wednesday after a warrant was issued for his arrest for the October 2023 death of 47-year-old Chris Tapp — who himself previously served 21 years behind bars before being acquitted of a murder he didn't commit.

According to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, medical personnel received a call in October of last year after a 47-year-old man, later identified as Tapp, was injured due to a "purported accident." He was taken to a local hospital where he died from his injuries on Nov. 5. 

SEE MORE: Vegas' Bellagio pauses fountain show after rare bird spotted in water

Police were notified about the "suspicious death" on Nov. 22. Detectives stated they learned Tapp was in an altercation inside a room at a resort prior to his death. 

The Clark County Coroner's Office ruled Tapp's death a homicide and said that he died due to blunt force trauma to the head. The report states radiology found evidence of multiple brain bleeds.

Court documents claim an argument over cocaine at a Halloween party is what allegedly led to the fatal encounter. According to a criminal complaint, event organizers said they bring "Instagram models" to parties — which they put on for wealthy clients — and then film the parties as social media content.

One witness told police the master bathroom became the "fun room" and was where several people were using cocaine. The complaint states Rodimer went into the bathroom and confronted Tapp about possibly giving his stepdaughter cocaine, allegedly saying "if you give my daughter any of that [expletive], I will [expletive] kill you."

A second witness told police that Rodimer was dressed like "Ken" from the Barbie movie, wearing a fur jacket with no shirt. While watching video from the party with police, the witness pointed out Rodimer and said they saw him turn into "angry Ken," rip off his jacket, and run toward the master bedroom.

The witness told police that she told the host of the party, whom she believed to be an F1 driver, that he needed to stop Rodimer because he was going to fight Tapp.

SEE MORE: Musk's Boring Company fined for violations at Vegas underground tunnel

According to the criminal complaint, a third witness told police that after hearing Rodimer yell at Tapp, he heard two loud banging noises and what sounded like a fight. Cell phone records showed this exchange between one of the witnesses, identified as Ryan, and an event organizer named Mark at 1:16 a.m.

RYAN: Yeah dude. I heard him screaming. I was in the bathroom and he threw something for sure but it definitely got that. I'm sure [party host] will tell you all about it.

MARK: Do I need to come back

RYAN: I think right now you're fine. I have no idea what's going on though. It's all happening behind closed doors so I think [party host] is trying to take care of it.

After returning to the suite later that night, the report states Mark saw Tapp lying on the bed, awake but not speaking. He also told police he noticed Tapp's face was swollen and there was a large mark on the left side of his neck. 

When Mark asked the party host what happened, he was told that Tapp slipped, fell, and hit his head on a coffee table. Mark told police he was concerned since Tapp was trying to fall asleep and that it wasn't good if the person had a history of concussions. That's when they called for help.

Text messages between Rodimer and his wife hours after the incident show the two arguing. At 4:59 a.m., the two were arguing back and forth about their divorce when Sarah brought up the attack against Tapp.

SARAH: I'm not gonna fill out stupid [expletive] paperwork that I don't need to worry about considering you're going to be in prison for attempted murder. I watched you nearly murder. Somebody and I had to take your [expletive] hands off from his neck as he laid there and you ran away, and I spent the next two hours trying to take care of him. Nobody should have to watch their husband murder somebody.

SEE MORE: Las Vegas hotel announces closing date to make room for MLB stadium

On Wednesday, Las Vegas police said they were able to identify Rodimer as the main suspect in the case and issued a warrant for his arrest. Lawyers for Rodimer sent Scripps News Las Vegas the following statement on Wednesday night.

"Mr. Rodimer is voluntarily surrendering to authorities and will post a court ordered bail. He intends on vigorously contesting the allegations and asks that the presumption of innocence guaranteed all Americans be respected."

The attorneys added that their client "intends on vigorously contesting the allegations and asks that the presumption of innocence guaranteed all Americans be respected. Rodimer's bail was set at $200,000.

This story was originally published by Jarah Wright at Scripps News Las Vegas.


Trending stories at Scrippsnews.com