This undated photo shows Christopher Masters, right, with his daughter, Erica. Christopher Mast ...

Las Vegas homicide victim was getting life on track, family says

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A teenager who fatally shot a man took a plea deal, reducing his charge to voluntary manslaughter and leaving the victim’s family feeling underserved by the justice system.

“I wouldn’t want him out,” Erica Masters said Wednesday of the man who killed her father, 48-year-old Christopher Masters. “It was a planned, premeditated murder. That’s how the detectives named it. On Nov. 8, he went to go rob him and November 9, he came back with a handgun. He already had it planned it out that he was going to hurt my dad.”

Prosecutors said Jeremiya Hines, 18, robbed Masters twice near South Royal Crest Street and Twain Avenue after Masters won a $4,000 jackpot. The second time, Hines shot Masters in the torso, killing him.

Hines is scheduled for sentencing in June and faces up to 10 years in prison.

Erica Masters said Hines knew her father, who lived in a maintenance shed near the area where he was killed. Christopher Masters would dig through garbage cans and sell the trinkets he found. Hines was one of his buyers, Erica Masters said.

But when Erica Masters saw her father on Nov. 7, she said he was a day away from turning his life around following a 4-year struggle with narcotics addiction. Christopher Masters told his daughter he got a job as a security guard at an apartment complex and was moving into an apartment at the complex the next day. She gave her father $60 and a pizza. He said “let’s see if I win.”

“I said ‘good luck, I love you daddy’ and he said ‘I love you too baby girl’ and that was the last time I saw him,” Masters said.

Masters remembered her father as an adventurer who loved to fish, hunt and hike. Masters and her older brother would often visit their father in Durango, Colorado, where he lived until 2017.

Masters convinced her father to move to Las Vegas when her second child was born. She said he always put a smile on his family’s face.

“His circumstances were hard, but he would always find a way to make us laugh or make our day better,” she said.

On Nov. 7, Masters took a video of her father playing with her two children, who are four and three. The video is full of laughter while Masters pretends to fall off a treadmill. A little girl stared at her grandfather in the video, giggling as he pretended to trip.

In the last four months, Masters said her children have often asked to visit grandpa again.

“I’m glad I recorded him to keep a memory alive,” she said.

Contact Sabrina Schnur at [email protected] or 702-383-0278. Follow @sabrina_schnur on Twitter.

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