Charges against man dropped in earlier case

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The man who threatened a mass shooting at the Stanley Cup Final hours before the Vegas Golden Knights clinched the championship last year could serve 6-15 years in prison after pleading guilty but mentally ill, the 8 News Now Investigators have learned.

Police arrested Matthew DeSavio, 34, just hours before the game in June 2023 after he threatened the mass shooting, documents said. A grand jury later indicted DeSavio on several charges.

DeSavio has agreed to plead guilty to three charges, including making threats or conveying false information concerning an act of terrorism, and aggravated stalking, documents said. Under Nevada law, defense lawyers must prove their client is mentally ill when pleading guilty to the stipulation. The language means a judge could add mental health treatment as part of sentencing.

In addition to verbal threats, DeSavio also posted threatening messages about the game on Facebook, police said. “I’m coming for you guys tonight and I hope you get every [expletive] police officer in Vegas Golden Knights there to defend you!” one message said, according to police. “Hope Sin City is ready for the Mandalay Bay massacre part duex [sic].”

Another person contacted police, seeing Facebook posts where DeSavio “[claimed] to want to conduct a mass shooting at T-Mobile Arena,” police said.

Fifty-eight people were shot and killed during the Route 91 Harvest Festival on Oct. 1, 2017. One October is the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. Two people later died from injuries they suffered that night, bringing the death toll to 60. Hundreds more were injured in the shooting.

In another post, DeSavio reportedly wrote, “I warned y’all October 1st was just a preview,” police said.

A judge previously dropped similar charges against DeSavio after the state failed to transport him to a psychiatric facility promptly, violating his constitutional rights.

A message on Matthew DeSavio’s Facebook page, cited by police in court documents. (KLAS)

On Oct. 26, 2022, a person reported a “disturbing Facebook post” to police where DeSavio reportedly threatened a similar mass shooting, police said.

“Something big is about to hit the Vegas Strip. #October1stwasjustapreview! Let’s [expletive] [expletive] up before I literally #blowup Paradise NV,” the Facebook post reportedly said, according to police. The Las Vegas Strip is in the unincorporated community of Paradise, Nevada.

Officers later contacted DeSavio, who agreed to meet them at a fast-food restaurant on Blue Diamond Road near Durango Drive, police said. While speaking to DeSavio, police said the man “stated he wanted to drive his vehicle into the Mandalay Bay.”

Records show a judge ordered DeSavio to undergo a competency evaluation in November 2022. DeSavio awaited treatment for 78 days, which his public defender said violated his due process rights. In a hearing in March 2023, District Court Judge Christy Craig noted the state failed to transport DeSavio to behavioral health treatment within seven days. DeSavio remained in custody for eight days after that hearing, prompting Craig to dismiss the charges and release DeSavio from custody in April.

A judge will sentence DeSavio on June 18.

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