George Tiaffay, a West Point Graduate, Was Convicted of the Murder of His Wife Shauna Tiaffay
A former Las Vegas firefighter and West Point graduate is accused of hiring a homeless man to kill his wife. George Tiaffay was convicted of first-degree murder last month and is facing life in prison without parole. His lawyer asked for mercy from the judge. He also asked for an additional 32 to 81 years in prison.
The prosecutor said that Tiaffay paid a stranger to beat his wife to death. Prosecutors said that the suspect was given $5,000 to kill Shauna Tiaffay, who was 46 at the time of the murder. She was a cocktail waitress and mother of an 8-year-old girl. But the woman’s family claims that the attack was not a suicide attempt.
In June of 2012, an estranged wife of a well-known Vegas firefighter was found dead in her apartment. Her father arrived at the scene early on Sept. 29, 2012. When he entered the residence, he found a bloody murder scene. During a trial, prosecutors said that the woman was bludgeoned to death. Initially, Stevens denied having anything to do with the killing. However, he later agreed to testify against Tiaffay in exchange for a plea deal.
The prosecution claimed that Tiaffay and his wife shared an argument over appearance. She had been working as a cocktail waitress at the Palms Casino Hotel. They were also separated from each other for a long time. Their daughter, Maddy, was with her father at the time of the attack. Tiaffay had purchased a gun recently. And he had a solid alibi.
Among the evidence, police discovered a key to Shauna Tiaffay’s apartment in a Goodwill donation shed. Investigators also found clothes belonging to the deceased woman in a tent at the crime scene. On the tent was a one-pound hammer tag. It matched the DNA of a person who lived at a campground near Stevens’ home.
Police found 87 phone calls between Tiaffay and Stevens in the month before the murder. Cell tower data showed that Stevens travelled between campsites near Tiaffay’s house. Other cell towers traced his movements between the homes of both Tiaffays and the Palms Casino. This information helped investigators to make the connection between Tiaffay and Stevens.
George Tiaffay’s attorney, Robert Langford, tried to paint Stevens as a psychotic liar. In a 107-page filing, Tiaffay laid out a dozen grounds for appeal. At one point, he wrote that he was suffering from lingering effects of prescription medication.
He also tucked his confession from Ely State Prison inside the 107-page filing. Langford attempted to argue that Stevens had a criminal past, but he had only a “recent history of violent behavior.” As a result, he was not a fit candidate for a defense attorney.
Before his arrest, Noel “Greyhound” Stevens had been friends with Tiaffay for a number of years. They had worked together at the Palms Casino. One of their jobs was to perform odd jobs for Tiaffay for cheap.
Both Stevens and Tiaffay are expected to face trial. They are both charged with first-degree murder.