Jury selection begins for ‘Thunder’ shooting case

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LAS VEGAS (AP) - Jury selection began Monday for the trial of a Las Vegas man accused of firing a gun backstage while trying to make off with costumes and props used by Thunder From Down Under male performers on the Las Vegas Strip.

Joey Kadmiri, 24, was in a Las Vegas courtroom when prosecutors dropped eight of 17 charges previously filed against him, including attempted murder, armed robbery and several counts of robbery with a weapon.

Kadmiri still faces nine felony charges that could get him decades in state prison if he’s convicted, including burglary, robbery, robbery with a weapon, battery with a weapon, battery with a weapon resulting in substantial bodily harm, possession of a controlled substance and weapons counts.

He has pleaded not guilty. Defense attorney Joshua Tomsheck has said Kadmiri had drug and mental health issues. He hasn’t said if Kadmiri will testify.

At least 15 witnesses are expected to testify about the March 18 incident at the Excalibur Hotel and Casino, including several members of the Australian-based male stripper revue.

The trial before Clark County District Judge Jerome Tao is expected to take several days.

Authorities say a 55-year-old performer was slightly injured by debris from a wall after Kadmiri fired a .44 Magnum handgun near the man’s head.

Several heavily muscled male dancers subdued Kadmiri until police arrived. Kadmiri was left with a black eye and bruises.

Kadmiri has had several other scrapes with the law, including a pending domestic violence case alleging he kidnapped, assaulted, coerced and beat a woman, pointed a gun at her and confined her to a closet in November.

Court records show Kadmiri was convicted in September 2011 of misdemeanor escape stemming from a March 2010 attempt to run, while handcuffed, from police arresting him on unspecified felony charges.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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