Conclusion of 2016 Murder Case
Conviction on Murder Charge Results in Life Term

Media Release
For Immediate Release

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

The Washoe County District Attorney’s Office has announced that a recent murder prosecution has concluded in the defendant being sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Frederick Douglas Borden, 65 (DOB 7/14/53) was sentenced yesterday by Chief District Court Judge Scott Freeman after having been convicted on charges of First Degree Murder, Robbery, and Fraudulent Acts Concerning Gaming in a September trial. Chief Judge Freeman also imposed a consecutive sentence for an unrelated Grand Larceny charge, to which Borden had pled guilty.  Borden has a lengthy criminal record, consisting of 11 prior felony convictions dating back to 1985. 

The case against Borden stemmed from a September, 2016 incident, in which the Reno Police Department (RPD) responded to a report of a battery at the Eldorado casino.  When officers arrived they determined that Borden had been playing blackjack that evening when he lost a bet and abruptly got up from the gaming table, grabbed the gaming chips he had lost, and began walking away. James Bryant, a 52-year old Eldorado Assistant Casino Shift Manager, approached Borden to discuss his taking of the gaming chips, when Borden unexpectedly punched Mr. Bryant in the face. Mr. Bryant collapsed to the floor and Borden fled.  Bryant was taken to Renown Regional Medical Center where he died the next day, having suffered a torn right vertebral artery as a result of the punch.  RPD Robbery Homicide Unit detectives were called to investigate and arrested Borden for Robbery.  Following Mr. Bryant’s death and the findings by the Washoe County Medical Examiner’s Office, this office filed Open Murder, Robbery, and Fraudulent Acts Concerning Gaming charges against Borden, and the case proceeded to trial. Borden was subsequently convicted of all three charges. 

At sentencing, Chief Deputy District Attorney Zach Young argued that a life without the possibility of parole sentence was appropriate for Borden on the murder charge based on the senseless killing of Mr. Bryant.  Borden’s significant criminal history included prior incidents of violence, his absolute refusal to comply with societal standards and poor compliance history with law enforcement while on previous grants of parole and even while incarcerated.  During the sentencing hearing, Borden placed blame on the victim for the crimes and refused to take responsibility for the killing.  He also became belligerent towards the judge, requiring the bailiffs to physically restrain him.
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