Las Vegas Sun

December 21, 2014

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Hearing for man accused of killing choir teacher delayed

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Jose A. Delatorre

A court hearing today for a man accused of killing a Basic High School teacher was moved to Thursday because prosecutors said a name was being added to the criminal complaint.

Jose A. Delatorre, 18, is scheduled to appear before Henderson Justice of the Peace Rodney Burr at 9 a.m. He is charged with murder, burglary, kidnapping and robbery in the Dec. 22 death of 32-year-old choir teacher Matthew Thomas Cox. A 17-year-old identified as Delatorre's brother is also charged as a juvenile.

"We anticipate filing an amended criminal complaint on Thursday morning charging two defendants," said Clark County Chief Deputy District Attorney Robert Daskas, who declined further comment.

Police say the 17-year-old, a student of Cox, told them that Cox picked him and Delatorre up and took them back to his house, where they played video games. Cox went upstairs to pack for his trip, and the 17-year-old joined him for a moment, then went back to the video games, the statement says.

After a while, Cox drove the two back to their home in downtown Las Vegas. After he stopped in front of the home, the teen's statement says, Delatorre struck Cox in the head and the two choked him. They used a tie in a gift box to tie his feet and hands, the teen reportedly told police.

They then drove the car back to Cox's home, where they took laptop computers, a Wii console and games, DVDs and an iPod. They left Cox on the sofa, with a blanket over him, according to the statement.

The brothers only meant to rob Cox, not to kill him, police said the teen said.

Cox began teaching at Basic in fall 2006.

Dave Clark can be reached at 990-2677 or [email protected].

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