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Suspect says she shot roommate to stop further rapes, police report says

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Metro Police

Mary Pitrello

Updated Monday, Sept. 16, 2013 | 5:02 p.m.

Mary Pitrello in Court

Mary Elizabeth Pitrello appears in court at the Regional Justice Center, Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2013. Pitrello is being charged with first-degree murder for the killing of her roommate at their Las Vegas apartment. Launch slideshow »

A 26-year-old woman admitted killing her roommate last week at their southwest Las Vegas apartment, but she said she shot him to keep him from raping her again, Metro Police said.

The shooting occurred Thursday night at The Falls, a gated condominium community in the 9000 block of Warm Springs Road, near Fort Apache Road. Oliver Doppert was shot through a closed bedroom door as he spoke on the phone.

Mary Elizabeth Pitrello, Las Vegas, drove from the crime scene to the Stratosphere with an acquaintance, Stevie Lynn Bast. There, Bast reported the shooting to security and Pitrello waited in a casino bar for police to arrive, police said.

Other details of the evening were included in an arrest report released today:

A neighbor called 911 about 9:20 p.m. Thursday to report Doppert had been shot. The neighbor told emergency dispatchers he saw two women – one of them was Pitrello – leave the apartment. Pitrello, who was carrying a long gun, pointed the firearm at the neighbor and ordered him to return to his apartment. The two left the condominium complex in Doppert’s car.

Emergency dispatchers also received a call from a woman identifying herself as Doppert’s girlfriend. She reported she was on the phone with Doppert at the time of the shooting. Doppert, the girlfriend reported, had told her he’d taken away Pitrello’s keys because she had been drinking and Doppert didn’t want Pitrello to drive drunk. The girlfriend also said Doppert told her Pitrello had a shotgun and was afraid she was going to kill him. The girlfriend heard a “boom” and the sound of Doppert falling to the ground.

After being taken into custody at the Stratosphere, Pitrello told police Doppert had raped her a week ago and did not want him to do it again. Police, however, noted Pitrello had not reported a sexual assault to police, had continued to live with Doppert and had shared poolside drinks with Doppert and Bast earlier in the evening.

Pitrello, who remains in custody at the Clark County Detention Center, was charged Monday with first-degree murder, discharging a firearm in a structure, robbery and assault with a deadly weapon. She is scheduled to be arraigned at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday in Las Vegas Township Justice Court.

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