LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3.com) -- Already facing possible charges of threatening a leading state lawmaker, Nevada Assemblyman Steven Brooks of North Las Vegas was arrested early Sunday morning for domestic violence and obstructing a police officer.
At 12:18 a.m. Sunday Metro officers were called to the 6000 block of Turtle River Avenue in far northeast Las Vegas (just south of Nellis Air Force Base) to check out reports of domestic battery.
Officers found Brooks, 40, in the driveway of the residence. Officers described Brooks as agitated and refusing to follow the officers' commands.
When officers attempted to take Brooks into custody he fought with them and tried to secure one of the officers' weapons. Metro officers subdued the second-term state lawmaker.
Officers said they determined that Brooks had physically attacked a family member before encountering the officers. He was arrested for battery and domestic violence.
NEIGHBORS WITNESS ARREST
Angela Bailey, a neighbor of Brooks, told News 3 that she witnessed the incident from shortly before 12:30 this morning until the police left at 2:40 a.m. She said about 10 total officers responded to the call in six to seven squad cars. She said officers had to basically body slam Brooks to the driveway to end the struggle.
“He fought with two of the cops and put marks on at least one cop," she said. "The police were taking pictures of the marks."
Bailey said the home is shared by Brooks and his wife.
“In the two months we have lived here the cops have been there at least three times at least when we’ve been around. .. It’s either quiet or a ruckus, there’s no in between.”
Brooks was held at the Clark County Detention Center. His bond was set at $3,000 bond on the domestic violence charge and a $1,000 bond for the obstruction charge. Sunday night his name was no longer listed on the county's jail website.
THREE WEEKS OF TROUBLES
Brooks, a Democrat, has been the subject of intense media coverage for three weeks after he was arrested Jan. 19 for making threats toward Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick, also a Democratic representative for North Las Vegas. He was arrested by North Las Vegas police during the evening of Jan. 19. The vehicle he was in had a pistol and about 40 rounds of ammunition.
On Thursday, Assembly Democratic leaders formed a select seven-lawmaker committee to consider possible recommendations or the ouster of Brooks for being unfit for office. Brooks decided later in the day to take a three-week leave of absence. Earlier in the week he was considering such a move and then changed his mind, saying he was able to serve.
During the last weekend in January Brooks spent several days in a mental health facility after an incident at the home of another family member.
He later reported to work in Carson City and was sworn in last Monday as the 77th Nevada Legislature began its work.
Early in the week he talked about taking a leave of absence to deal with his medical issues. He later changed his mind, saying he was fit and prepared to serve. The Democratic Caucus then kicked him out. He agreed on Thursday to take a three-week leave of absence from the Legislature on the same day that a seven-member committee was formed by Democratic leaders that could lead to his expulsion from his seat.
Assembly Majority Leader William Horne, D-Las Vegas, who will chair the bipartisan panel, said Sunday that Brooks' arrests reflect ongoing concerns about his fitness to serve.
"It's unfortunate that these things are happening in Mr. Brooks' life, and I'm grateful no one was injured," he told The Associated Press. "I'm not a mental expert. But I would agree it has shown some signs that Mr. Brooks is dealing with problems that may distract from his ability to do the service he was elected to do."
Horne said he hopes the special committee can reach a decision "fairly quickly." The panel's choices range from no action to expelling Brooks from the Assembly.
Kirkpatrick said Brooks' arrests have been a distraction for the Legislature, but have not stopped lawmakers from moving forward with business.
"As far as Mr. Brooks, we have to move on," she said Sunday. "I'm a little bit shocked (by the latest arrest)."