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Former congressional candidate endorsed by Trump surrenders for murder

Former congressional candidate endorsed by Trump surrenders for murder

Daniel Rodimer, a former wrestler who ran for a Republican congressional seat in 2020, surrendered himself to authorities in Nevada on Wednesday evening after an arrest warrant sought him out on an open murder charge.

Mr Rodimer, 45, turned himself into the Clark County Detention Center hours after the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police (LVMP) identified him as a suspect in the murder of 47-year-old Christopher Tapp.

Authorities say Tapp was found suffering from injuries inside a hotel room on the Las Vegas Strip in October 2023. He was transported to the hospital but later pronounced deceased. Initially, officials believed his injuries were a result of an accident.

However, the LVMP conducted a suspicious death investigation and discovered Tapp had been in an altercation. The Clark County Coroner’s Office then ruled Tapp’s death as a homicide as a result of “blunt force trauma to the head.”

Lawyers for Mr Rodimer told The Associated Press that Mr Rodimer was “voluntarily surrendering to authorities” and would post a court-ordered bail.

“He intends on vigorously contesting the allegations and asks that the presumption of innocence guaranteed all Americans be respected,” David Chesnoff and Richard Schonfeld, Mr Rodimer’s attorneys, told the news outlet.

Mr Rodimer is a former WWE wrestler but may be best known for his unsuccessful 2020 congressional campaign. Mr Rodimer challenged Democratic incumbent, Susie Lee, for Nevada’s 3rd Congressional District seat.

At the time, former president Donald Trump endorsed Mr Rodimer, once saying at a rally, “Dan Rodimer, we’re with you all the way, Dan.”

Throughout that campaign, Mr Rodimer fought allegations of police run-ins and arrests after records revealed his former girlfriend and wife had called 911 twice in 2018. Once, she called regarding an alleged domestic dispute incident. Another time she accused Mr Rodimer of taking $200,000 worth of cash, guns and jewelry from their home.

Mr Rodimer’s wife, Sarah Rodimer, was forced to confront the allegations by sharing a statement on Mr Rodimer’s former campaign website. In it she defended her husband, saying the 911 call was a verbal argument that led to no arrest nor charges.

After losing the Nevada election, Mr Rodimer moved to Texas where he unsuccessfully campaigned in a special election for Texas’s 6th congressional district seat.

Notably, Mr Rodimer was accused of faking a Southern accent and adopting a new persona in the hopes of generating support. Florida Representative Matt Gaetz once called Mr Rodimer a “fake Texan” and phony. He encouraged voters to not support him.

The Independent has reached out to lawyers for Mr Rodimer for comment.