Third arrest made in case of model encased in concrete

October 19, 2019 GMT

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Las Vegas police have arrested who they believe to be a third suspect in the killing of a woman who was found encased in concrete in the desert.

An arrest warrant was issued Thursday for 39-year-old Casandra Bascones who was in Milwaukee when police first interviewed her about the missing woman, police said. The arrest was made in Wisconsin.

Bascones, also known as Casandra Garrett, Casandra Winn, Casandra Tran and Nikki Hart, faces multiple charges including first-degree murder and kidnapping, authorities said.

Las Vegas model 24-year-old Esmeralda Gonzalez was missing for five months before her body was found Oct. 8 encased in a homemade concrete and wooden structure north of Las Vegas, police said.


Investigators believe Gonzalez was held against her will in 45-year-old Christopher Prestipino’s home. An anonymous tip led to his arrest Oct. 11.

Prestipino was captured on surveillance video six days after Gonzalez disappeared at a Home Depot paying cash for five 60-pound (27-kilogram) bags of cement mix among other items, investigators said. He returned to the store the next say and bought a drill and a concrete mixing paddle.

Gonzalez was last seen alive May 31 when she was captured on residential surveillance video less than a mile from Prestipino’s home, investigators said.

Prestipino’s 31-year-old girlfriend Lisa Mort faces a charge of harboring, concealing or aiding a felon, authorities said. She was arrested Aug. 27 in an unrelated drug case.

Neither Prestipino or Mort has a listed attorney to comment on their behalf.