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Nevada posts 7.7% unemployment in August -- highest in the nation

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) -- Nevada's unemployment rate remained at 7.7% in August -- the highest in the nation -- according to the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation (DETR).

Three states -- New York, New Mexico and California -- had 7.6% unemployment.

Nevada's jobless rate was unchanged from July. Last year, unemployment in August was at 14.5%.

(Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation/U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Job growth in Nevada came in third-highest in the nation as the leisure and hospitality industry added the most jobs over the month, adding 3,900 jobs since July.

DETR Chief Economist David Schmidt noted that this is the first look at jobs data since the Delta variant emerged, causing a statewide mask mandate that was followed by efforts by employers to require vaccinations or negative COVID-19 tests for workers... Read More

I-Team: Therapist accused of sexually assaulting 15-year-old student with autism; detectives seek possible victims

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) -- A behavioral therapist at the Las Vegas Crescent Academy is accused of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy who has autism, North Las Vegas police told the I-Team.

Police issued a news release on Thursday, saying officers had arrested Amy Gabriela Villarreal, 29.

Crescent Academy describes itself online as a community-based behavioral treatment program for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Detectives said Villarreal worked at two other centers for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder, including the Center for Autism & Related Disorders (CARD) in Las Vegas and the Hamilton Center Mental Health Clinic in Henderson.

Investigators said they believe there may be other victims due to the circumstances of working with a vulnerable population, they said.

As of Friday, Villarreal was charged with two counts of sexual assault, one count of lewdness with a minor, and one count of child abuse... Read More

Motorcyclist who was killed in Monday crash near Jean identified

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) -- A motorcyclist killed in a Monday crash near Jean, southwest of Las Vegas along Interstate 15, has been identified as 62-year-old Steven Robert Boyung.

The Nevada Highway Patrol (NHP) investigated the crash, which happened just after 4 p.m. on Monday.

A preliminary investigation indicates that the motorcycle collided with a red Mazda SUV that was eastbound on SR-16 approaching the Goodsprings Bypass.

NHP said the Mazda failed to yield the right of way.

The motorcycle overturned in the collision and Boyung, who is a Jean resident, was ejected. Boyung died at the scene, NHP said.

This marks the Nevada Highway Patrol – Southern Command’s 55th fatal crash resulting in 64 fatalities for 2021... Read More

NEW: Cases above 1,300, but many COVID-19 indicators below levels before Labor Day

Below is the full COVID-19 report for Thursday, Sept. 16

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) -- Nevada reports more than 1,300 new COVID-19 cases and 24 deaths in data released today.

Many of the measurements used by the state are near -- or lower -- than where they were two weeks ago, before the Labor Day weekend. The most recent spike in infections followed the July 4 holiday weekend.

With 1,371 new cases -- 681 in Clark County -- the case counts remain above 1,000 statewide, which has been a trend with few exceptions since the middle of July..

Of the state's 24 deaths, 17 were in Clark County.

Test positivity was down slightly statewide at 11.3% after yesterday's report of 11.4%. Clark County's test positivity rate was unchanged at 8.8%... Read More

Man arrested in 3-vehicle crash that killed 15-year-old boy held on $100,000 bail

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A 52-year-old man arrested in connection with a fatal three-vehicle crash Thursday morning in Sunrise Manor is being held on $100,000 bail.

If Derek Herman makes bail he will be placed on high-level electronic monitoring with drug and alcohol monitoring. His next court day is Sept. 21.

Herman, the driver of a box truck involved in the crash, was charged Thursday with DUI and one count of failing to obey a red traffic light. The crash happened shortly after 7 a.m at the intersection of E. Lake Mead Boulevard and Walnut Road, between Pecos Road and Lamb Boulevard.

Police say that three vehicles were involved — two cars and one box truck.  A 15-year-old boy, who was the front passenger in a Toyota Camry, died at the scene... Read More

Over 10,000 TSA workers have had COVID-19: Which airports saw the most cases?

(NEXSTAR) – The Transportation Security Administration has officially recorded more than 10,000 cases of COVID-19 among its employees since the beginning of the pandemic.

The TSA recorded its 10,000th case during the first week of September, a representative for the agency said. As of Friday, total confirmed cases of COVID-19 among employees had risen to 10,243.

Of those total cases, the TSA recorded 27 deaths, not counting two deaths among screening contractors. Most of the remaining workers who had been infected — 9,728 employees — had already recovered, according to the TSA.

Still, 515 employees were said to be suffering from active COVID-19 infections as of Friday. Per the TSA’s current policy, employees with active infections are placed on paid administrative leave while they recover... Read More

Man accused of setting 10 model homes on fire has been arrested

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – A man accused of setting 10 model homes on fire in the southwest Las Vegas valley has been arrested, according to Metro Police.

Elijah Jonathan Faasavalu, 20 was charged with 10 counts of 1st-degree arson in connection with fires set overnight on Sept. 2 at Coja Street and Desert Cassia Avenue. He is being held without bail until his court date on Sept. 30.

According to the arrest report, Faasavalu was walking from his cousin's house where he is currently staying and made his way to the model homes.

In statements made to police, Faasavalu said he saw some palm trees and gathered them up and took them to the second story of a model home and soaked them with approximately 10-12 cans of chafing oil. He then lit the pile in several spots. Faasavalu stood around for approximately 30 minutes waiting for the fire to start before leaving. ... Read More