LAS VEGAS » A former chef who told police he stabbed his Filipino wife to death with knives and a cleaver in their Las Vegas kitchen was ordered Thursday to face trial in Nevada state court, where he could face the death penalty.
Richard Magdayo Dahan waived a preliminary hearing of evidence in the Jan. 10 slaying of 28-year-old Daisy Casalta Dahan, and Las Vegas Justice of the Peace Deborah Lippis bound the case over to state court.
Dahan, 40, plans to plead not guilty at his arraignment March 12 in Clark County District Court., said his attorney, Deputy Clark County Public Defender Ed Kane.
Prosecutor Richard Scow said Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson and a panel of administrators will determine later if Dahan faces the death penalty.
The case is eligible for capital punishment because the murder charge against Dahan includes allegations that he used several knives in the attack and tortured his wife before she died.
Dahan walked into a police station shortly after the slaying and told detectives he couldn’t accept that his wife wanted a divorce just two years after they married in the Philippines.
He provided a detailed account of the bloody attack with a serrated chef knife, a meat cleaver and filet knife.
Dahan also told investigators that he was a kidney transplant recipient in failing health, and had recently lost his job as a chef at a Las Vegas Strip casino resort.
Daisy Dahan’s friends and co-workers at a Las Vegas nursing facility have said they feared she was in a dangerously abusive marriage before she was killed.
The group was able to raise the funds to return Daisy Dahan’s body to her hometown, friend and licensed practical nurse Elizabeth Fisher said Thursday outside court.
Daisy Dahan was buried Tuesday in the Philippine city of Bohol, Fisher said.