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March 5, 2015

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Armed assemblyman was prepared for a shootout, report says


Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

Assemblyman Steven Brooks is seen on the third day of the 2011 legislative session Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011, in Carson City.

Updated Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2013 | 6:16 p.m.

Click to enlarge photo

Marilyn Kirkpatrick

Assemblyman Steven Brooks said he was “not afraid to die” and was “willing to have a shootout with the police,” his relatives told officers before the North Las Vegas Democrat was arrested for threatening the Democratic leader, according to a law enforcement report obtained by the Las Vegas Sun.

According to the report, Las Vegas City Councilman Ricki Barlow started the chain of events that ultimately led to Brooks’ arrest on charges of threatening a public official, Assembly Speaker-elect Marilyn Kirkpatrick.

Barlow told police on Saturday evening he had spoken to Brooks, who had once served as Barlow’s assistant at the city of Las Vegas. Brooks, according to Barlow, “needed help,” the North Las Vegas police report said.

“Councilman Barlow believed Assemblyman Brooks had a loaded gun in his possession, and he believed there was a real danger to Speaker Kirkpatrick,” according to one of the officer’s statements.

Brooks was arrested by police Saturday at 5:27 p.m. After his release from jail Sunday, Brooks declared his innocence to area journalists.

In his car, police found a .357 Smith and Wesson revolver inside a white shoebox, along with 41 live rounds of ammunition.

Brooks’ wife told police that a friend in the security business had given Brooks the firearm. His wife also told police she was worried about him and that his “mental health has been getting worse.”

According to the report, Brooks never personally confronted Kirkpatrick with the weapon.

Kirpatrick called police after Sen. Kelvin Atkinson relayed to her Brooks’ threats. According to the report, Barlow had called Atkinson to warn him of Brooks’ statements.

Kirkpatrick told police that Atkinson wrote in a text message that “no one should feel safe around Brooks” and that he should be kept out of the legislative building.

Kirkpatrick, who “was visibly upset and crying,” told police that “she was in fear that Brooks was going to come to her house and either kill or harm her,” according to the documents.

Earlier today, Brooks’ lawyer Mitchell Posin, told the Las Vegas Sun: “His mood is very positive. He certainly feels like he hasn't done anything illegal.”

Posin said Brooks is in a Las Vegas-area hospital being treated for a bleeding digestive system. He was released from the hospital Tuesday afternoon and had gone home to rest, Posin said.

A spokesman for the city of Las Vegas, for which Brooks is a management analyst, said he is on leave without pay as of Tuesday.

Also Tuesday, Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto will decide on whether to prosecute Brooks, rather than the Clark County District Attorney's Office.

“Our office has primary jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute state elected officials, but we have yet to receive the prosecution referral,” said spokeswoman Edie Cartwright.

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  1. Can anyone confirm if he's on paid administrative leave from the City of Las Vegas.

  2. Violent Democrats.

  3. This has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with mental illness Bob. Stop being small minded and try to add to a discussion about guns, violence, and mental illness for a change. Now, do you think the owner of a gun should be able to just give that weapon to anyone or should there be registration and background checks no matter how the gun is to exchanged?

  4. Las Vegas City Councilman Ricki Barlow deserves the public's thanks. He did exactly what one should do when there is a threat of violence from someone who seems to have gone off the deep end.

    And, although I agree with Mark Schaffer about this being a mental breakdown/illness issue, it is not at all sustainable that a background check and/or registration would have prevented Mr. Brooks from obtaining a handgun (or any other weapon for that matter). No one has reported that Mr. Brooks had a prior violent history or a history of mental illness. he would have been fully within his rights to own any weapon.

  5. Test_Guy,

    What should an elected official do when knowing of a threat to the public or to another person?

    A. Should the elected official call another elected official?

    B. Should the elected official call the police?

    If the A is the first choice, why would the elected official deny he or she made the call?

  6. THAT "friend in the security business" need to be "disbarred" from every working in the security business again. Stupid, stupid, stupid. To give a gun to someone in the midst of "disassociation."

  7. Perhaps the wife is the hero here?

  8. Mark: This is about abuse of power by hypocritical elected officials who feel the rules don't apply to them. It's not about party, it's about rampant corruption in the name of screwing over the American Taxpayer. But of course when the narrative doesn't suit your global warming kumbaya, let's all give our guns to the government and sing in a circle mentality you say something completely opposite.

  9. Let's see threatening public officials and apparently in possession of an unregistered firearm. I'm wondering if I'd get such kid glove treatment for those charges.