Lawmaker’s wife worried about his mental stability
By KEN RITTER and SANDRA CHEREBLAS VEGAS — The wife of a Nevada Assembly member accused of threatening another state legislator reportedly told police she was worried about her husband’s mental stability, according to reports released Tuesday.Assemblyman Steven Brooks, D-North Las Vegas, was arrested Saturday night in his hometown on a felony charge of intimidating a public officer by threat of physical violence.The Las Vegas Sun, citing a law enforcement report, said Brooks’ family members told police that Brooks said he was “willing to have a shootout” and was “not afraid to die.”North Las Vegas police Sgt. Tim Bedwell wouldn’t disclose the caliber of the weapon that police seized when Brooks was arrested, or whether it was loaded at the time. At a news conference Tuesday, Bedwell identified incoming Assembly Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick, D-North Las Vegas, as the target of the alleged threat. He said police were investigating whether other lawmakers also were threatened. Bedwell did not release the arrest report, saying it would be up to prosecutors to do so. The newspaper said that according to police reports, Las Vegas City Councilman Ricki Barlow was among the first to express concerns about Brooks’ mental state and concerns for Kirkpatrick.Barlow reportedly called Sen. Kelvin Atkinson, who called Kirkpatrick. Kirkpatrick then called police.Bedwell declined to identify witnesses, but said police received accounts about the alleged threats from several people.Brooks’ lawyer, Mitchell Posin, said Tuesday that Brooks was hospitalized in Las Vegas for tests and treatment after complaining of internal bleeding that may have stemmed from a pre-existing condition. Brooks was due to be released later in the day, Posin said.“I think this whole episode has got to be stressful,” the lawyer said.Posin told The Associated Press he couldn’t divulge more about Brooks’ whereabouts or his condition, and said he didn’t know if Brooks would attend a meeting today of the Assembly Ways and Means Committee. Kirkpatrick is also a member of the committee.“Mr. Brooks has legitimate physical medical problems that he was dealing with today,” Posin said. “He rejects any of the allegations that have been made against him.”The panel is scheduled, along with members of the Senate Finance Committee, to begin a review of Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval’s budget proposals. Assemblywoman Maggie Carlton, D-Las Vegas, chairwoman of Ways and Means, said Tuesday the committees would meet as scheduled.Brooks’ hospitalization in Las Vegas made him a no-show at a morning news conference he had called at his Carson City office where he promised the media he would talk about his arrest.Brooks is charged with intimidating a public officer by threat of physical violence. He’s due in court next Monday. If convicted, he could face one to five years in state prison and a $10,000 fine.Clark County District Attorney Steven Wolfson notified state Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto that the case will be turned over to her office for prosecution, said Edie Cartwright, spokeswoman for the attorney general. Assembly Democratic Majority Leader William Horne said Sunday that he and Kirkpatrick were assigned security protection because of the alleged threat. Brooks spent a night in jail before being freed on $100,000 bail. He’s due in North Las Vegas Justice Court next Monday. The Legislature convenes the following week, Feb. 4.