Strip elevator stabbing suspect says he acted in self-defense - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Strip elevator stabbing suspect says he acted in self-defense

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Carlos Heredia (LVMPD) Carlos Heredia (LVMPD)

Carlos Heredia, 23, admits he and his friend, 25-year-old Trent Wilcox, had been drinking the morning both were arrested at the Mandalay Bay, but he says he remembers everything.

Speaking exclusively to FOX5 from the Clark County Detention Center, he claims he used a knife in self-defense and that surveillance video will prove his innocence.

"It's a big misunderstanding," Heredia said.

He described what happened early Saturday inside an elevator at the hotel inside the Mandalay Bay, stating that he and Wilcox were leaving a party when a man and woman couple he had never met before entered.

"Trent started talking to them, and then they started disputing. I wasn't really paying attention," Heredia told FOX5.

Heredia said he didn't know what started that argument, but he said the couple also seemed drunk.

"And Trent Wilcox starts kicking the female out the elevator and she's coming back in laughing like it's funny," Heredia said.

An arrest report states Heredia and Wilcox left the elevator but continued to argue with the couple.

Then the report states they got back onboard and Heredia pulled out a knife.

That's something Heredia doesn't dispute, but he says he showed it for self-defense reasons.

"I took the knife and I put it in this hand and then I was like, 'Alright, I don't want any problems,' and the next thing you know, the guy punches me in the face," Heredia told FOX5.

But the arrest report does not mention Heredia getting punched.

Instead, the report states Wilcox grabbed the other man from behind in a choke hold and that both fell to the floor.

Then the report states Heredia started stabbing towards them, hitting both Wilcox and the victim.

Heredia told FOX5 that happened because he couldn't see and he thought he was being attacked.

"When I got punched I had my eyes closed and I had the knife in my hands, and that's when I started swinging it like this … I was stumbling, falling over because I couldn't see and I was trying to hit the exit button," Heredia said.

Heredia said he didn't intend to kill anyone and that he's glad the victim is OK.

"He was released from the hospital, so that made me feel a little bit better that he didn't actually get hurt, hurt," Heredia said.

Heredia said he plans to plead not guilty and that the surveillance video from the casino will back up everything he is saying.

Since this is an ongoing investigation, that video likely won't be made public until the case goes to trial.

MGM Resorts International, who owns Mandalay Bay, released a statement saying in part:

"The safety and security of our guests and employees is always a top concern at our resorts. Our security officers were already in the area and were on scene very quickly to assist and hold the suspects until police arrived."

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