Sentencing in Manslaughter Case
District Attorney's Office Announces Sentencing in Incline Killing

Media Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Michelle Bays
775.321.4307 (o); 775.771.6049 (c)

October 23, 2015
Reno, Nevada

The Washoe County District Attorney’s Office announced today the sentencing of a California man in connection with the killing of an Incline Village resident that occurred in December, 2013.   

Joseph John Personeni, 21 (DOB 10/24/93), of Santa Rosa, California, was sentenced October 22, 2015 to a maximum term of 10 years in prison following a full day of testimony in District Court.  The prison sentence was suspended against the prosecution’s argument and Personeni was placed on probation for five years, with the condition that his probation begin by serving 364 days in the Washoe County jail beginning this Sunday.  Personeni previously pled guilty to a charge of Voluntary Manslaughter on July 7, 2015.

The case against Personeni began on December 21, 2013 when the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a deceased male outside an Incline Village apartment.  The subsequent investigation determined that Personeni and Christopher Elliott, 46, from Incline Village, became intoxicated at a local bar.  After the two left the bar and walked to Elliott’s nearby condominium, a physical altercation ensued.  As a result of the altercation, Elliott died of blunt force trauma, to include severely broken ribs and traumatic brain injuries.  Personeni also had scrapes and bruising consistent with having been in a fight.  Although Elliott was rendered unconscious, Personeni, who had lost his keys and stated he did not understand the gravity of Elliott’s injuries, left Elliott on the porch and called his father in Santa Rosa instead of 911.  Upon his father’s arrival in Incline Village, the two returned to Elliott’s residence where he was found deceased.

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Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »