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Jailhouse informant driving murder-for-hire case

From the Associated Press…

Jailhouse informant driving murder-for-hire case

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Jailhouse informant Deen Cassim was a driving force behind the murder-for-hire investigation of bodybuilder Craig Titus, according to a review of more than 100 phone calls recorded by police.

On the tapes, Cassim is heard repeatedly prodding Nelson Brady Jr., a friend of Titus, to meet with an undercover detective to pay for the services of a hit man named “Fred,” according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, which obtained tapes of the calls.

Cassim told Brady that Fred, in turn, was willing to kill as many as three witnesses in Titus’ murder case for the right price. Titus and his wife, Kelly Ryan, both professional bodybuilders, are accused of killing their personal assistant, Melissa James.

But when Brady didn’t show at three separate meetings with an undercover officer to hire Fred, Cassim became irritated. In one conversation, Cassim seemed to threaten Brady.

“What you’re dealing with right now is not something like buying a $10 piece of crack,” Cassim said. “OK, you’re dealing with something that puts you in a different league.

“When you’re dealing with someone like Fred, you are dealing with guys … (just) a snap of the fingers,” Cassim said. “If they feel that a situation is coming up, they take care of it. They don’t take care of it by threats. They take care of it by how they do it.

“I’m so (expletive) pissed man,” Cassim told Brady. “I’m willing to spend twenty grand for (Fred) to come see you.”

Brady responded, saying, “No, I know, Deen. I’m telling you I’m not going to let you down on this.”

Cassim also told Brady that Brady disrespected him when he didn’t show at the meetings to hire Fred.

Cassim, in custody on a robbery charge, claimed he can “do a lot” even though he is behind bars.

“You know the game. When you disrespect someone in prison … you’re dead. The way you acted today, that’s disrespecting me … but I know you realize I can do a lot of (expletive) from in here, and I’ll tell you why … I’m very well connected in Vegas.”

“That’s why I’m not going to (expletive) with you,” Brady said.

Brady eventually did participate in two meetings with an undercover detective, authorities said.

Police said Brady showed up at the meetings and handed over two envelopes containing cash and information on the three targets of the murder-for-hire plot: Anthony Gross, Megan Pierson Foley and Jeremy Foley. All three have given witness statements alleging that Titus and Ryan made incriminating statements about James last year.

Brady now is charged with three counts of solicitation to commit murder.

Brady’s defense attorney, Erick Ferran, said the audio recordings raise questions about whether Cassim’s actions on behalf of police were legal.

“This is not a case where my client ever manifested a clear willingness to be involved in this scheme,” Ferran said. “Without the government instigating the plan, initiating it, then brooding and pursuing my client, I don’t think there would be any case at all.”

But in one of the conversations, Cassim seemed to tell Brady that he didn’t have to go through with the plan if he didn’t want to.

In addition, Brady told Cassim that Titus knew about the plan.

Cassim told Brady: “When you’re telling me Craig only knows so much and he doesn’t know anything, (it’s) ’cause we (are) on the phone, right?”

Brady: “He does know now.”

Cassim: “He does know, right?”

Brady: “Guaranteed.”

Information from: Las Vegas Review-Journal, http://www.lvrj.com

13 Responses to “Jailhouse informant driving murder-for-hire case”

  1. Family Friend Says:

    I’m thinking you guys should have to wear hats out there in Vegas, getting kinda hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys from where I’m sitting.

  2. venice member, $Version=1 Says:

    I commented earlier that it was possible that Cassim was pushing the murder for hire plot- he obviously had a lot of self interest in incriminating Titus and Brady.

    That being said and assuming it’s correct…I’m not sure that let’s Titus or Brady off the hook.

    Brady seems like he’s more or less everyone’s bitch - the cops, Cassim and Titus all seem to have taken turns owning him.

    It digusts me that Cassim is free, but I don’t necessarily disagree with how the cops handled it - lesser of 2 evils.

  3. chainsaw Says:


    Fred Hitterman? The way they pushed Brady and actually threatened him with bodily harm if he didn’t meet and get this done? Very questionable. Can’t the cops just leave CT alone and have his day in court? Iam almost thinking that they don’t want him to go to court.

    If I steal $100 from a rich guy and give it to a poor homeless person, am I really doing any good? The cops here think they can do anything, I mean anything to convict and/or accuse and hold for trial. I wouldn’t put it passed the cops for threatening Megan Foley. You know they did. And who could blame her for lying under that pressure.

    We all know that if someone confesses to a crime, the cops always have to back up the confession with hard evidence. These cops have nothing but witness statements that now I believe were coercd completely. Look how this casim coercd brady. The cops are all lying to CT to get him to tell them who is who in the drug world. Would you be shocked to find that it is more than likely the “cops themselves dealin the dope?”. It’s true, and has been in the paper. Even 2 months ago one for juice.

    So I don’t subscribe with the lesser of 2 evil theory. Unless you are voting Dem or Repub.

  4. venice member, $Version=1 Says:


    I can understand your point of view - I really can.

    Without hard facts one could reasonably argue a lot of points either way…

    For the sake of arguement though it sounds like Cassim basically came to the cops and said, “Look I can help you guys nail down CT on a Mrder for Hire scheme, Brady’s been shooting his mouth off about it.”

    Then when push comes to shove, Brady “chickens out” - but now Cassim bullies him and says whatever he needs to say to get Brady to meet with “Fred”

    I mean the cops

  5. venice member, $Version=1 Says:

    Cops can’t control everything that happens in a conversation once Cassim gets on the phone with Brady…

    There are definitely a lot of gray areas in this case…at the end of the day its what can be proven and what a jury believes.

  6. chainsaw Says:

    100 phone calls, come on…

  7. Dennis L. Bates Says:

    …a review of more than 100 phone calls recorded by police.

  8. venice member, $Version=1 Says:

    I don’t doubt that Brady is a weak minded individual who got bullied into meeting with Fred.

    All I’m saying is it’s possible that Brady initiated the talks and its also quite likely that Titus knew what was going on.

    Does that not give Titus and Brady some culpability.

    I will grant you that at a certain point Cassim fiber-optically bitchslapped Brady…but that doesn’t mean he and Titus won’t pay the price. I believe Titus had knowledge of the plot - I could be wrong. 100 calls - okay I see ur point -

  9. venice member, $Version=1 Says:

    100 calls - okay that’s an assload of calls - but that doesn’t mean Brady didn’t initiate things - it just means he bit off more than he could chew - I’m not in disagreement with anyone - I just think that he (Brady) and by extension Titus can’t be let off the hook just because Cassim was forceful -i believe they both had knowledge and were on board - and that Brady got cold feet - Cassim then acted as any manipulative felon would’ve and did what he needed to do to get his freedom back.

  10. Jason G Says:

    This reply is re-posted from the Sunday Las Vegas Review Journal article, “Titus targets witnesses’ credibility” which I posted yesterday.

    I believe there has to be more to this story since the “Murder-For-Hire” plot begain. Consider the statement from Bradys’ attorney in this article. “Without the government INSTIGATING the plan, INITATING it, then PUSHING my client, I don’t think there would be any case at all”. If this statement proves to be true that the government, (DA and or Police), INSTIGATED this plot, and we already know that they have at least PUSHED it with over 100 phone calls from the informant (Snitch) Cassim who actually threatened Brady with bodily harm, (or to kill him). I believe I know how I would react under these circumstances, however, everyone may NOT always react in the same manor.

    Now, did the DA (or Police) bring Titus, Casim and Brady together or did this all happen by chance? I do not believe this was all by chance with over 100 phone calls and the threats. The Police and DA had to have been monitoring these phone calls from the jail or at least they were allowing these calls to continue. Were the Police and DA also scripting these calls? I’m not an attorney, however I just cannot conceive how this would be legal. And with what we now know, if you and I were on a jury together, I believe we would both come to the same verdict. The DA had to know that this “Plot” was never going to go anywhere except as a vein attempt to get Titus to bite on a set-up, a set-up which now appeares to have been orchestrated by someone other than the snitch, Cassim. We now why Cassim threatened Brady with bodily harm, it was Cassims’ “Get Out Of Jail FREE” card.

    And will the Titus’ defence be able to use this failed “Plot” at trial along with the fake dead body in the trunk? I believe they will and will show just how far the DA and Police will go to manfacture and falsify their evidence in this case. After hearing all of this, what jury would then believe the DA? Speaking of the DA (Rogers), and his assistaant Daskus, they have a lot at stake here as they can not afford to lose another high profile murder case like, as previously mentioned, the Sandra Murphy Rick Tabish fiasco. I’m now waiting for the mud slinging and the finger pointing to begin.

    By the way, 12 of these taped conversations are on the Las Vegas Review Journal web site, www.reviewjournal.com/webextras/titus/

  11. shockandawe Says:

    If this were a movie, it’d be called “Dumb and Dumberer”.

  12. Chainsaw Says:

    look for my comments at “see more this week” even though it show’s 0 for comments.

  13. cellblock Says:

    It’s funny that Cassim got out of a 12 year sentence by doing this for the state, and now is long gone………..

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