Willis announces he’s running for judge | NevadaAppeal.com

Willis announces he’s running for judge

Staff reports

Robey Willis announced Wednesday he will file for re-election to a fourth term as Carson City justice of the peace.

Willis, 63, began his judicial career in 1984 as a juvenile special master and associate municipal judge.

He was appointed justice of peace and municipal court judge in 1989 to fill a vacancy on the bench and was elected in 1990.

“I have always tried to blend common sense with an understanding of people as well as the law in dealing with the many issues brought before the court,” Willis said. “I feel privileged that the community has placed its trust in me to carry out the duties of this office.”

He faced two rivals in the primary election in his 2000 re-election bid, garnering more than 80 percent of the vote to automatically retain his seat.

He cited a number of programs he has been instrumental in establishing during his tenure on the court, including the Community Service Program requiring offenders to give thousands of hours of service back to the community; alternative sentencing, which requires supervised probation and community service in lieu of jail time for minor offenses; the mental health court designed to reduce recidivism and provide treatment for special needs defendants; the friend of the court program providing technical assistance during hearings; and Court Appointed Special Advocates, which assists children from troubled homes.

He said his improvements to the court system include amending procedures to provide greater assistance to abuse victims in obtaining protective orders, implementing online video arraignments, and streamlining the process in order for drunken driving and more serious crimes to be dealt with more quickly resulting in cost savings and better security.

Willis and his wife, Barbara, moved to Carson City 37 years ago. Prior to becoming a judge, he taught and coached at Stewart Indian School. He received a master’s degree in education administration from the University of Nevada, Reno.

He is the recipient of the Outstanding Judicial Education Certificate, the highest level of Supreme Court Judicial Education.

The justice court is responsible for conducting preliminary hearings on felonies and gross misdemeanors, trials on misdemeanors and arraignments on all criminal matters. The court also handles traffic cases and protective orders against domestic violence, stalking or harassment.

Civil cases including small claims actions, evictions and other matters involving up to $10,000 are also heard in justice court.

Mark Krueger, 36, a senior deputy with the Nevada Attorney General’s Office announced in February he will be challenging Willis for his seat.

Filing opens on Monday, candidates have until 5 p.m. May 12 to file for office. Primary elections are in August. The general election is in November.