LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Eric Larsgaard, 29, of Las Vegas, was arraigned in federal court today on an indictment charging him for allegedly unlawfully possessing a firearm and deliberately setting fire in a hotel room, announced U.S. Attorney Nicholas A. Trutanich for the District of Nevada and Special Agent in Charge Patrick Gorman for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Larsgaard has two prior criminal convictions in Clark County, including ownership or possession of a firearm by a prohibited person and unlawful possession of a controlled substance. A jury trial has been scheduled before U.S. District Judge Jennifer Dorsey on July 16, 2020.
According to allegations contained in the criminal complaint and indictment, on March 4, 2020, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department officers responded to Sam’s Town Hotel and Gambling Hall after the fire alarm in Larsgaard’s hotel room was activated. Hotel security found that he had barricaded the door with a dresser and mattress. Guests staying in the hotel room next to Larsgaard’s room had also called hotel security to report that they heard three gunshots coming from his room. For safety reasons, officers evacuated all guests on the floor. After unsuccessfully attempting to make contact with Larsgaard for approximately four hours, responding law enforcement officers forced entry into the room and took Larsgaard into custody.
Officers executed a search warrant and located in Larsgaard’s room a Ruger handgun that previously had been reported stolen. The firearm’s safety was off, and the hammer was cocked in the firing position. Several bullet holes were located in the room. Further, an arson investigator with the Clark County Fire Investigation Division observed at least four different locations of deliberate ignition within the room. The arson investigator also noted that the smoke alarms had been tampered with and removed from the wall.
If convicted, Larsgaard faces (a) a statutory maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for the charge of felon in possession of a firearm, and (b) between five to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for the charge of arson. In addition to imprisonment and fines, Larsgaard also faces a period of supervised release following any term of imprisonment imposed, restitution, and monetary penalties. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only. If convicted of an offense, the sentencing of a defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
This case is the product of an investigation by ATF, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, and the Clark County Fire Investigation Division. Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephanie N. Ihler is prosecuting the case.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a nationwide program by the Department of Justice that has been historically successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department has made turning the tide of rising violent crime in America a top priority. In October 2017, as part of a series of actions to address this crime trend, the Department announced the reinvigoration of PSN. For more information about PSN, visit https://www.justice.gov/usao-nv/project-safe-neighborhoods-project-guardian.