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Ammar Harris / Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department

A manhunt for a gunman wanted in connection with a shooting and fiery crash that left three people dead on the Las Vegas Strip has spread across the nation, police said Monday.

Las Vegas Police Capt. Chris Jones told reporters Monday that Ammar Harris faces three murder charges in the incident early Thursday that killed the driver of a Maserati and a taxi driver and passenger.

District Attorney Steve Wolfson said he hoped Harris would surrender. He called the case "of the highest importance," and said prosecutors are working with police on the case.

Harris, 26, is suspected of firing several shots from a Range Rover into a Maserati driven by aspiring rapper Kenneth Cherry - also known as Kenny Clutch - on Las Vegas Boulevard. The Maserati rolled into an intersection, setting off a six-vehicle crash and causing a taxi to burst into flames.

"We are looking anywhere and everywhere, nationwide," Las Vegas Police Officer Jose Hernandez said. "We have reached out to agencies all across the nation. This has turned into a collaborative effort with our federal partners here in Las Vegas."

Hernandez said the public's help is being sought to find Harris, who should be considered armed and dangerous. Hernandez said Harris was arrested in 2010 on charges including pandering with use of force, kidnapping, sex assault, coercion and weapons charges.

The disposition of the case wasn't immediately known.

Harris' SUV was found Saturday in the garage at his home, a gated apartment complex a couple of blocks east of the Strip, Hernandez said. Police have said the triple homicide stemmed from an altercation between Cherry and Harris in a valet area of the upscale Aria resort a block south of the crash scene.

A passenger in the Maserati was wounded in the arm, and four people from four other vehicles were treated for non-life-threatening injuries after the crash. The Maserati passenger has not been identified, and police said he was cooperating with investigators.

A section of the Strip was closed for 15 hours after the tragedy.

Police released a photo of Harris taken after his arrest in the 2010 case. The photo showed Harris with tattoos on his right cheek and words on his neck above an image that appeared to depict an owl with blackened eyes. Harris sometimes goes by the name Ammar Asim Faruq Harris.

Lawyer Robert Beckett said Cherry's family wanted to respond to rumors that the 27-year-old - who produced a rap video using the name Kenny Clutch - was a gangster and a troublemaker.

Court records show Cherry had no criminal cases or convictions in Las Vegas, and there was no record of arrests.

"My son was a good boy," Kenneth Cherry Sr. said Saturday. "My son was a victim just like the two people in that taxi. Trouble found him. The people in the taxicab, trouble found them."

Contributing: Associated Press



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

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