Leeds shooter, retired law enforcement officer; man shot, prominent real estate developer

Responders attend to a shooting in Leeds, Utah, July 17, 2014 | Photo by T.S. Romney, St. George News

LEEDS – The Washington County Attorney’s Office confirmed to St. George News Friday that the shooter in Thursday night’s incident in Leeds is a retired law enforcement officer. The shooter’s name has not been released, and no arrests have been made in the case.

Thursday, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and emergency responders were dispatched to the area of Silverado Court in Leeds after a call came in at 8:16 p.m. that a shooting had occurred.

According to information from the Sheriff’s Office, Stephen Aizenberg, 70, of Leeds, approached his neighbor’s house Thursday night armed with a handgun. Witnesses told detectives that Aizenberg walked down his neighbor’s driveway toward their house with his weapon pointed at the home’s occupants and a man and several women who were visiting them. When Aizenberg continued approaching with his weapon drawn and aimed, the man visiting Aizenberg’s neighbors, who is a retired law enforcement officer, shot Aizenberg. Aizenberg was pronounced dead at the scene.

After the shooting took place, the retired law enforcement officer remained on scene and cooperated with investigators. Deputies were told the man and the other visitors did not know Aizenberg or why he was approaching them with a drawn weapon. No arrests have been made in connection with the shooting.

Formerly of Las Vegas, Aizenberg was a retired contractor who formerly owned or was partner in multiple construction, development and real estate-related businesses, including Royal Construction Company out of Las Vegas, Mark III Management Company Inc. out of Las Vegas, Tri-Mark Development Inc. out of California and S.B.A. Financial out of California. Several of Aizenberg’s businesses closed in early 2014.

According to public records, Aizenberg purchased his home, situated on a 152,460-square-foot property on Silverado Court in Leeds, in July 2005 for about $931,000.

Aizenberg had no criminal record, and no concealed weapons permits were on file in his name at the time of his death, according to a private investigator’s report.

St. George News reporter T.S. Romney contributed to this report.

Ed. Note: Correction made: Aizenberg’s home lot is 152,460 square feet and is located on Silverado Court, as reconfirmed with property tax records.

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  • Chris July 18, 2014 at 5:12 pm

    152,460-square-foot home? That cannot be true. Even a 15,246 square foot home is very large. 152,460 square feet may be the size of the lot.

    • Joyce Kuzmanic July 18, 2014 at 7:17 pm

      Ed. Note: Correction made: Aizenberg’s home lot is 152,460 square feet and is located on Silverado Court, per reconfirmed property records.

  • Bender July 18, 2014 at 5:13 pm

    Aizenberg’s Facebook page shows him as a fan of Southern Utah Practical Shooting Range.

  • Pheo July 18, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    152,460 sq ft would be a crazy big home. That’s probably the size of his lot: 3.5 acres.

    • Joyce Kuzmanic July 18, 2014 at 7:18 pm

      It is. Ed. Note: Correction made: Aizenberg’s home lot is 152,460 square feet and is located on Silverado Court, per reconfirmed property records.

  • Mark July 18, 2014 at 5:57 pm

    Maybe 15,246 sq feet? even that is a mcmansion .

  • Bob July 18, 2014 at 7:03 pm

    So it was a senile old man running around pointing guns at random people, or it was something a lot more sinister that we don’t know about yet… I’m betting it not random at all…

    • FRIEND July 18, 2014 at 8:19 pm

      I agree, Bob. I’ve known Stephen Aizenberg for almost 30 years. There is something very wrong here. I am not surprised that he was a member of a shooting range due to the fact that he did have a concealed weapons permit. Anyone bother to check with Las Vegas? There is certainly something very sinister about this. Was it necessary to shoot to kill? I don’t know, I wasn’t there but I do know that whatever happened certainly needs to be investigated thoroughly.

      • Henry July 20, 2014 at 11:10 am

        Sinister? Maybe not. Given the “Practical Shooting” comment and other reports, I’m starting to suspect that he simply heard or saw strangers in his next door neighbor’s driveway, went to check it out, and was shot during the process.

        “Good guy with a gun” shot by “good guy with a gun.”

  • Sheryl lee July 19, 2014 at 5:12 am

    I don’t know the details other than I have known Mr. Aizenbergh for several years and he is not an old senile man running around with a gun. He was a very young seventy, on the ball and not the type if man to go of half-cocked. He was very friendly, and was not a confrontational type if person. This is a true tragedy and I would be willing to say there is more to the story than what us being published!

    • Charlie D July 24, 2014 at 7:13 pm

      I had done work with Aizenberg for years Las Vegas, and he was very hot headed on more than one occasion regarding very minor issues. I had considered him a bully and was only mildly surprised when I read the news.

      • Patty W. July 25, 2014 at 6:42 pm

        Hot Head???? Bully???? This isn’t the Steve Aizenberg my husband & I knew. We winter in an RV Resort in Indio, California & Steve was our neighbor. We all knew him to be kind, thoughtful, generous & sweet. We loved this guy from the 1st minute we met him and enjoyed being with him. He loved his dogs, he loved people & he was so happy with the woman he loved. There is something terribly wrong with this story & the case needs to be investigated!!!

  • No nickname July 19, 2014 at 7:46 am

    Maybe there is more to this and we may not ever know. Maybe he saw strangers at his neighbors house and thought they were there to rob the place. Maybe he thought his neighbors were out of town. I don’t know, but there could be more to this than a nut with a gun. If this were the case he is guilty of poor judgement and it cost him his life.

  • Missy July 19, 2014 at 9:16 am

    A man lost his life. I would hope for an investigation, a thorough one. What a tragedy for all involved.

    • Brett July 19, 2014 at 4:06 pm

      Because heaven forbid somebody defend themselves from an armed assailant approaching them.

  • laytonian July 19, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Which was the good guy with the gun?

    In Utah, Nevada and Arizona, people are just itching to shoot someone else. I highly doubt this man would be dead IF he had not approached the house with a gun drawn.

    • Bo July 19, 2014 at 6:28 pm

      People are just itching to shoot someone. Are you serious??
      That’s like saying people are just itching to run their car into someone else and that’s why we have so many car wrecks each day.
      Silliest comment I’ve ever heard

  • JAR July 19, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    I’m sure the Washington County Sheriff/ County Attorney offices will do a complete thorough investigation. Including interviews, blood, breath test on all parties involved. They know what their job is. Our heart & prayers go out to the families.

    • Mark Vinclio July 20, 2014 at 11:03 am

      I don’t think it matters if the shooter was drunk or on drugs. He hit the threat and prevented an unknown number of other deaths or injuries if Steven would have opened fire.

  • J. July 20, 2014 at 3:33 am

    My husband and I were good friends with Steve, his family, his children and the women he loved. We have lived in his home. We have vacationed and traveled with Steve. We have eaten many meals and shared many great times. Steve was not in any way old or feeble. He was fit, extremely educated, overly kind and thoughtful.

    The assumptions in these comments by people who didn’t even know Steve are so far from reality. How do we know what really happened? How do we know when no one can Speak for Steve. He was not a violent man but more a very genial man who would sooner give you the shirt off his back or what ever you needed just to see you smile. I knew this man!!! I have been to this house. I have met some of his neighbors.

    There is something very very wrong with this story, with this picture. I am deeply troubled. I know in my heart and in my gut there is something very wrong with this story. Did someone hold an insurance policy. Or, I don’t know what but something just isn’t right!

    Don’t be quick to judge, all you chair side critics. This was a fine gentle man who shouldn’t be dead. Something about this stinks and I’m afraid we may never know the truth.

    • Angel C July 29, 2014 at 3:31 pm

      I agree, yes there was an insurance policy…very large

  • Friend July 20, 2014 at 11:50 pm

    I worked for Mr. Aizenberg for the last ten years and consisted him one of my closest friends. Steve was in deed very well educated, a prominent real estate developer in California and Nevada and would give you the shirt of his back.

    This article and others articles are far from the truth. Fact is Steve was a clean cut guy, weight around 155 pounds and stood about 5’6″. Just in the last few months he had several Bureau of Criminal Investigation checks for employment opportunities which he passed in flying colors and he did have a concealed weapons permit that I have seen. Steve was certainly not a violent person, not a senile old man, or feeble as he could out work someone 20 years his junior and had excellent communication skills. He exercise daily walking his small dogs around this neighborhood and subdivisions that he built in Nevada.

    The assumptions that Steve was walking down the neighbors drive way pointing a gun at people does not make sense to me. Steve never left his small dogs alone and apparently they were inside his home after the shooting.

    I don’t understand why the retired cop was not held ? Why his name has not been released to the public and if all the witnesses were the people visiting the crime scene house. I just don’t understand and this does not make sense Steve was a friendly guy. Something isn’t right about this story. Hopefully everyone at the crime scene was given a blood test and the true facts are presented to the county attorney.

    I don’t also understand what good it does to write an article about this terrible event and to put down how much the Aizenberg’s purchase the property for. I sold the place to the Aizenberg’s and public fact and figures are wrong.

    • Henry July 21, 2014 at 9:27 am

      The property numbers are there because that’s the only information the reporter can get sitting at her desk. That constitutes “investigative journalism” these days.
      As to the rest, and as I mentioned above, I think the key to the story is the “Southern Utah Practical Shooting Range” comment above. I suspect that Steve heard or saw strangers in his next door neighbor’s driveway, Perhaps he thought his neighbors were away, or perhaps the strangers were loading something into a car.
      Either way, his suspicions were aroused, so he grabbed his gun, went to check it out, and was shot when the retired cop saw some guy approaching with a gun.
      The retired cop, however, isn’t without fault. There are no reports of arguments, shouts, or a confrontation, so I also suspect that the retired cop simply drew and shot him out of hand, with no attempt whatsoever made to defuse or clarify the situation.

      • Just some chick July 21, 2014 at 6:25 pm

        The whole ‘shooting range’ comment only reinforces that this guy probably wouldn’t cross that large lot of his w/gun drawn to check up on his neighbors home & that he more than likely knows the proper procedures and such when handling a firearm. Concealed carry tells me he probably more well versed than most. People like this have a good understanding of how to approach these situations. That he was shot by a retired law enforcement makes it sound even more fishy – they know better. Still a good amount of light around 815 too, isn’t there??

        • Angel C July 29, 2014 at 3:29 pm

          Yep, you are correct…this isn’t Steve’s way nor demeanor….fishy for certain.

    • Angel C July 29, 2014 at 3:30 pm

      I agree with all of this…I know him well

  • DinoVegas July 21, 2014 at 2:27 am

    I too had the pleasure of knowing Mr. Aizenberg and his family. He always seemed very friendly and gentle , not aggressive or anyone you would feel threatened by. It’s hard to believe he was walking up on his neighbors with a gun drawn. I really hope the Sheriff’s office does a thorough investigation. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family..

  • ridgerunner July 21, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    I too worked in Nevada for Steve Aizenberg through Desert Aviation. He was honest, and honorable and not a crazy feeble old man. Something stinks and I hope law enforcement can find out why. Obviously the retired law enforcement officer was at fault too as u don’t shoot to kill outside of a home and he should know it. My daughter is in law enforcement and I am a retired Army officer something is not correct about Steve’s killing.

  • ridgerunner July 21, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    Also the news neglected to mention that Steve Aizenberg’s neighbor was in the hospital and he had asked Steve to watch his home. Who was the killer and why was Steve shot in cold blood for doing what he was asked to do? The new reporter should do some research. That’s called second degree murder.

    • jimbo July 22, 2014 at 3:53 pm

      Homeowner was in the hospital. He has dementia and had a stroke Wednesday night. He did not ask Steve to watch over the house. All of the visitors were in town due to the touch and go nature of his condition. Homeowners wife had not asked Steve to watch over the house either.

  • Rick Bowler July 21, 2014 at 6:39 pm

    Really then why didn’t steve call 911 if he thought they were breaking in…theroy busted…a guy having a gun pointed at him can’t push pause while he dials 911.

    • THAT GUY July 21, 2014 at 9:47 pm

      I agree 100% why did he not call 911 first? I believe we have the right to keep and bear arms to protect our civil liberalities ,life, limb, property. But to go beyond that. Arming yourself, with a gun, and taking your gun. Off of your property. Brandishing it. To investigate another person’s property. I could only assume you have crossed the line from deffending your personal property,to actively and consciously making the decision to start investigating off your property. And from that point on, your takeing the law, into your own hands. So why did he not call 911?

  • ridgerunner July 22, 2014 at 1:24 am

    Why was the shooter and visitors there and not the home owner? Steve was stupid not to call 911.

  • ridgerunner July 22, 2014 at 9:14 am

    I must apologize. First of all, sadly, Steve had been drinking, secondly, I misunderstood xxxxxxxx…Steve was not asked to watch the house, apparently, and we’ll never know for sure, he thought someone was over there who shouldn’t be and went to investigate. We’ll never know why he didn’t just call 911. The guy who shot him was a retired cop who said he told Steve to not point the gun at them, but Steve didn’t respond and he obviously feared for their lives.

    This should never have happened. xxxxxxxxx said the 2 youngest boys (Steves and XXXXXXXX’s) are taking it as well as can be expected..they didn’t see that much of Steve anymore. However, Steve’s oldest daughter is expecting twins and she’s taking it very hard.

  • v July 23, 2014 at 10:02 pm

    i think he committed suicide. he was older…in real estate during the crisis…had investors that held him responsible…and suffered from bouts of depression. suicide.

    • S July 24, 2014 at 1:49 pm

      Are u saying steve did suicide? He would’ve shot himself . We knew him he didn’t do this on purpose

  • v July 23, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    sold all his businesses in january????

  • S July 24, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    I wish people would not be so inconsiderate, and maybe think about that steve has two young children 13 and 15. At some point these kids will see these ridiculous post. There was no Malice intended, it’s simple steve obviously thought someone might have been trying to rob his neighbor. He simply went over to investigate it could’ve been handled in many ways but unfortunately the way he went about it he paid the ultimate price. Let him and his family rest in piece.

  • Derail August 27, 2014 at 12:27 am

    Nice guy or not… you NEVER approach a stranger with your gun drawn when they don’t pose a lethal threat to you, period. What would you have done… a stranger approaches you with his gun on aim, doesn’t stop when you ask him to stop and put the weapon down. Would you have waited and watched for the muzzle flash after he fires at you or would you take measures to protect yourself like the shooter did. Great people can make dumb decisions too. It’s a tragedy for all that was totally unnecessary and caused by poor judgement.

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