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Inside Vegas - Steve Miller

Steve Miller is a former Las Vegas City Councilman. In 1991, the readers of the Las Vegas Review Journal voted him the "Most Effective Public Official" in Southern Nevada. Visit his website at:

Another man beaten at the Crazy Horse Too
"An officer at the scene said that club employees showed restraint." - LV SUN

If Crazy Horse employees showed "restraint" last Monday, it was for the first time in history!

    Victims (L to R):  Scott Fau, Paul Russo, Jermaine Simieou, Eben Kostbar, Eddie Soula, and Kirk Henry

INSIDE VEGAS by Steve Miller
April 25, 2005

LAS VEGAS - A California man was beaten Monday after he refused to sign a blank credit card slip. 39 year old software consultant Royal Jackson had recently undergone gastric bypass surgery and wore braces on his teeth, but that didn't stop six Crazy Horse Too employees from beating and kicking him according to eyewitnesses.

As with others who were past victims of beatings by Crazy Horse employees, it was Jackson who was arrested for assault and booked into the
Clark County Detention Center. After his release Tuesday morning, Jackson returned to California and looked up "Crazy Horse Too" on He saw my many articles on the subject and decided to send me this E-mail:

Hi Mr. Miller:
I was the patron at Crazy Horse Two who was beat up outside the club for refusing to sign a charge bill I had not even started. Can you please contact me on what I can do, if I can press charges. Also the police who arrested me denied me medical attention and held me for 3 hours before booking me.

Royal Jackson 

I responded immediately and asked for details because the local news media had been told only one side of the story (reprinted later in this column) -- a side told to reporters by a police officer on the scene who described a much different Royal Jackson.

For the first time, here is Mr. Jackson's version of what happened:

Steve, This is what I remember happening on Monday, April 19, 2005 at the Crazy Horse Too Strip Club.

My brother and I had just come from Nikki Lee's Pub on Sunset, and we went into the Crazy Horse Too Strip Club. My brother was driving since I left my truck at Nikki Lee's. Prior to entering the club, I gave the valet $20.00 to leave us up front, so we could have our car ready as soon as possible. Once entering the club, we sat down at the closest seats to the door, because those were available. I went to the bar and gave the bartender my credit card and Driver’s License.

The bartender came back and said you need to sign this before I can give you your drinks. I said that is insane. I said I have been here before, and never had to sign before buying anything. That is when the bartender became abusive. I defended myself and said the same things to him, then he came over and started arguing with me. That is when my brother said: “ Royal I will pay for the drinks,” and I said: “No Tyke, we don't have to put up with this.” That is when the manager came over and told us to leave.

So when we got up to leave the bartender followed us out. Then the manager came over and started pushing me. He pushed me three times, and then I defended myself. That is when the bartender came over with another guy and we started to tussle. I grabbed the chafing dish tray tops and threw them at them, that is when I was grabbed from behind by someone, and was thrown outside. 

The next few minutes were a blur. I was hit from all sides by so many people it became a blur. The next thing I knew I was on the ground, and covering up so as to not get hit hard in the face.  That is when I saw my brother step back in and push some guys off me, and then I was able to get back up. That is when the police arrived.

The police grabbed me with the bouncer. One of the bouncers had me in a headlock while the police arrested me. That is when I was put in the police car and the police officer put my cuffs on so tight, they were cutting the circulation off from my fingers. The officer kept me over at the Strip Club for another two hours, I thought he was going to let me out and let them finish the job. So I told him to take me to the police station. The paramedics came, and they looked at my face, and determined that my mouth was all swollen due to my braces. I informed them that my braces cut only in the inside, not the outside, they refused to look at me. It seemed like he waited another hour and then we left. Once I got to the detainment facility, there was a nurse and 8 police officers there to arrest me, the lead officer was good, he told me not to be hostile.

I assured the officer that I didn't want any more trouble, so I cooperated with the officer. I was taken in the booking facility, and was forced to sit there for a while. They booked everyone else, and my arresting officer came back after another hour. I complained about my cuffs, and finally someone listened and they were loosened up. After another hour one of the booking agents, said: “What are we going to do with him?” That is when one of the other officers said, they were not going to book me, and then the officer who arrested me came in and said: “Yes we are.” So then I went through the booking process.


The nurse who was supposed to look at me, came over and said: “He smells like alcohol,” and then walked away. They put me in a separate cell away from everyone else, where the phone was broken, and I sat there contemplating my situation. They brought me back out and I talked to the nurse. She was more interested in that I had gastric bypass surgery than taking care of my face and my swollen hands. I told her the cost of my surgery and she just sighed. Next they took me to where the rest of the inmates were. If not for their help in understanding the booking process and getting a bail bonds man, I would have been in there for a while since this was the first time I got arrested. I was released at 4 in the morning, still bloody, swollen, tired, and contemplating what an ordeal I had just been through. I was just glad I was alive.

I caught a cab from the Golden Nugget, back to Nikki Lee's, where I went in and saw Patrick the bartender, and he informed me how my face looked, and I told him what happened and went to a friend's house to rest up and to return to California.

I currently am a University of Nevada Las Vegas graduate, and am in the Kappa Alpha Phi Fraternity.  -- Royal Jackson

Court documents reveal that Jackson's beating was one of many over the years that involved Crazy Horse employees ganging up on a customer while club owners and managers watched. No club employee has ever been prosecuted for participating in such a beating.

"Israel Bella, another witness for the plaintiff, said he was driving north on Industrial past the Crazy Horse when he noticed a large group of men in front of the club. Bella, who works for a local paving company, was on his way to work when he noticed a man on the ground, surrounded by a group of men all wearing black pants, he testified. He called 911. 'There was one guy on the ground kind of curled up in a ball,' he said. 'It looked like he was trying to protect himself.'" - Las Vegas SUN, January 9, 2003

Bella was describing to a jury the beating of Scott David Fau who in 1995 died of blunt force trauma several hours after his encounter with bar bouncers.
A troubling fact is that most of the men who have been beaten at the Crazy Horse were of color, and all told a similar story.

Rick Rizzolo (facing camera) stands by as Jackson (third from right) is
taken into custody.
(Photo by Buffalo Jim Barrier)

(L to R) Rick Rizzolo listens as bouncer tells officers how he was
"assaulted." Jackson (second from right) listens attentively.
(Photo by Buffalo Jim Barrier)

(L to R) Crazy Horse employees Greg Liosi (smiling), Rocco Lombardo,
unidentified parking attendant (smiling), and Al Rapuano (smoking)
joke as Jackson is arrested.
(Photo by Buffalo Jim Barrier)

Reporters from the Las Vegas SUN and KLAS TV News did not interview Jackson or the three eyewitnesses. Instead they concentrated on interviewing a policeman who was not an eyewitnesses to the beating, but still had much to say in defense of the club's actions.

The Las Vegas SUN
on April 19 reported: "Police said (emphasis added) the incident started when 39-year-old Royal Jackson of Las Vegas became 'verbally aggressive' toward a bartender at the club. When Jackson continued to argue, a club manager tried to calm him but Jackson continued to shout and yell at the bartender and the manager, police said. As Jackson moved toward the door, he overturned several warming trays on a buffet table, upending a can of Sterno that sparked a small fire in the carpet that was quickly doused by club employees, police said. Jackson then allegedly jumped on the bartender and the fight spilled onto the street, police said. An officer at the scene said that club employees showed restraint when handling Jackson. Jackson is now charged with assault, police said."

Since 1998, a small group of LVMPD officers have been suspected of receiving sexual and monetary favors from the Crazy Horse in exchange for minimizing or omitting information unfavorable to the club in police and news reports. This may have occurred in this case.

Possibly for that reason, on Friday following the assault, Jackson and the eyewitnesses were interviewed by Special Agents of the FBI's Organized Crime Task Force.

The SUN ended their April 19 story with: "The federal government has been investigating the Crazy Horse Too for more than a decade in a racketeering probe. According to indictments of two of the club's current or former employees, the club allegedly used strong-arm tactics on customers to squeeze as much money out of them as possible (emphasis added)... Kenneth Kirtpatrick told police he and several friends went to the club May 24 for a bachelor party. Kirkpatrick said club security threatened him, knocked him to the ground and punched and kicked him. Kirkpatrick told police he was handcuffed and felt hands in his pockets... Four Crazy Horse Too employees were charged with robbery, battery and conspiracy to commit robbery and coercion in that case."  (The Clark County District Attorney refused to prosecute, however)

While the beatings continue unabated, its reported that Crazy Horse owner Rick Rizzolo may be trying to cut a deal with the feds to keep his brother, sister, and father from being prosecuted. Its expected that part of the deal will also include the permanent closing of the Crazy Horse. However, plaintiffs in two lawsuits pending against him and the club are watching to see if he tries to liquidate or transfer his assets before trial.

Attorneys representing Kirk Henry in his attempted murder lawsuit, and attorneys for Crazy Horse neighbor Buffalo Jim Barrier who is suing Rizzolo for harassment, have learned that Rizzolo may currently be trying to sell the club and property. If he were allowed to do so prior to trial, assets that may be used to pay judgments could be jeopardized. Within the next week, the plaintiffs are expected to ask the court for writs of injunction to prevent any sale until civil and criminal cases are resolved.

With that said, I'll give Mr. Rizzolo the last word.

"Unfortunately, Mr. Miller attacks more than just enemies; he mocks the public, the public's intelligence, and real journalism. With this unethical twisting of the truth, Mr. Miller... disgrace(s) even Yellow Journalism." - Rick Rizzolo, October 9, 2001

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