Police: Fugitive in Vegas manicurist death found in Arizona

Krystal Whipple Photo: AP
Krystal Whipple

January 11, 2019 02:51 PM

LAS VEGAS (AP) ‚ÄĒ A 21-year-old woman sought for almost two weeks by authorities in Las Vegas after allegedly skipping out on a $35 manicure and using a stolen car to run over and kill a manicurist has been arrested in Arizona, police said Friday.

Krystal Whipple was taken into custody by a team of Phoenix-area fugitive hunters involving local police, county investigators and FBI agents, Las Vegas police said. The arrest occurred in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale.


Las Vegas police Officer Jacinto Rivera said he did not immediately have details of the arrest. He said prosecutors will seek her extradition from Arizona to Las Vegas where Whipple was sought in a warrant issued Jan. 4 on murder and robbery charges in the killing of Ngoc Q. Nguyen, 51, of Garden Grove, California.

The case sparked intense national interest after police released an internet plea for help identifying Whipple that showed parking lot security video of a woman leaving the nail salon Dec. 29.

Homicide Lt. Ray Spencer said Whipple tried to pay for her manicure with a fraudulent credit card before telling Nguyen that she was going to her car to get cash, then drove away.

Nguyen went to the front of the car and a man who Spencer identified as Nguyen's husband was seen in the security footage holding onto the vehicle from behind as the car accelerates out of a parking lot.

Police say the car was a rental that had been stolen. It was later found abandoned at an apartment complex.

Whipple has a criminal record in Las Vegas including a conviction in 2017 for attempted possession of a stolen vehicle. Clark County District Court records said she was sentenced to four months in jail for violating probation in that case.

An attorney who represented Whipple at that time said he doesn't represent her now.

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(Copyright 2019 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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