Man who helped stabber flee gets prison too

Staff Reports

MINDEN - A 39-year-old Reno ex-con was sentenced to four years in Nevada State Prison for his part in an argument over a casino parking space that led to the stabbing of a Carson City man.

District Judge Dave Gamble told Richard A. Stewart he must serve a minimum of 12 months before he is eligible for parole.

Stewart admitted giving a ride to Remengesau "Ray Ray" Erungel, 24, after Erungel stabbed the victim on Oct. 11.

Gamble sentenced Erungel to 10 years in prison on Jan. 14.

Stewart apologized to the 24-year-old Carson City victim who attended the sentencing.

"(Stewart) asked me to get out of the car, called me a punk, and spit in my face. The people who were with him egged him on," the man said.

Stewart was not involved in the stabbing, but admitted giving Erungel a ride. He claimed he didn't know what had happened until he heard a news broadcast that authorities were looking for the suspects.

"I apologize," Stewart said during the hearing last week. "I told 'Ray Ray' and the other gentlemen to walk away. I wish I had pulled them away and I did not. I had no knowledge of what happened until after the fact.

"I hope you accept my apology and fully recover. It was uncalled for and stupid on my part."

Stewart said he and his companions entered the casino and when they came out, Erungel said, "Hey, we've got to go."

"You took a person who had just finished stabbing someone and helped him escape?" Gamble asked.

Stewart said once he learned what Erungel had done, he was afraid.

"I felt if I did turn him in, my life would be in danger. If he was able to stab somebody over a parking place, what would he do to me?" he said.

Prosecutor Michael McCormick said Stewart's actions precipitated the event.

"In the state's eye, he was responsible for getting the whole thing started," McCormick said. "This person isn't blame-free. On the security video, he can be seen running out of the casino."

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