By Rolando Larraz
Nothing makes me happier after being in home confinement for more than ten weeks than to learn that our flamboyant city attorney is partially retiring.
The article says that “Little Napoleon” is leaving his post in July and I wonder why we have to wait that long. I never thought I would see this day come.
While many in the KA Local media are referring to him by saying, “Jerbic has served the city of Las Vegas with distinction,” I believe he has been an embarrassment to the city.
In 1992, Brad Jerbic was selected by former Las Vegas Mayor Jan Jones’s City Council as the Las Vegas City Attorney and has maintained that position through the two Goodman regimes until present.
Jerbic’s twenty-four-year-old former live-in boyfriend was arrested and put in jail for domestic violence and rumors surfaced that after the incident Jerbic bailed out the boyfriend.
The city’s leading law official called the police on his live-in boyfriend and the police arrested and charged him with domestic violence.
The daily newspaper reported that John Dean Baker was arrested March 13, after an argument over money turned physical between him and his boyfriend, Las Vegas City Attorney Brad Jerbic.
According to the police report, Baker pushed Jerbic against the living room wall, striking his chest. Jerbic walked away and Baker went into the garage and grabbed a metal hatchet.
Jerbic called 911 and police arrested Baker, a college student who was living with Jerbic at the time.
Justice of the Peace Ann Zimmerman sentenced Baker to 100 hours of community service and fined him $340.
She also ordered Baker to complete six months of domestic violence counseling and to submit mental health reports from his mental health care provider monthly to the court.
Zimmerman also prohibited Baker from having any contact with Jerbic, but it is unknown if the couple complied with the judge’s order. Jerbic’s comments about the case prompted local defense lawyers to allege that Jerbic was seeking special treatment.
Jerbic’s office has a tough “no-drop policy” for domestic violence cases. But after Baker’s arrest Jerbic told the Review-Journal he would ask prosecutors to drop the case if Baker, who is bipolar, stayed on his medications.
Jerbic later told the newspaper he regretted making those comments, and prosecutors said they had no intention of dropping the case.
After the arrest, Baker was jailed for about two days, before Justice of the Peace Ann Zimmerman said he could be released under intensive supervision provided his residence was confirmed and his medication stabilized.
Prosecutor Susan Krisko filed a motion with the court a day after Baker’s release asking the judge to order authorities to take Baker back into custody.
In her motion, Krisko stated the court released Baker over her objections and failed to confirm his residence prior to his release.
Zimmerman said later she resents the accusation that she failed to certify his living situation. “Somehow I’m supposed to know pretrial services released him without confirming his residence?” she said.
After the embarrassing back and forth, the local television station reported Jerbic as having “served the city of Las Vegas with distinction.”
If the incident would have happened between a man and a woman the city would not allow that to just be and most likely would have fired the “honorable” city attorney, and community leaders would have shown disappointment and would have asked for the city attorney to resign.
Jerbic ruled the city attorney office like a little Napoleon or a little Caesar kind of dictator; I was told that he does not even give the judges the opportunity to make decisions in their own courtroom.
I was told, but have no proof of it, that most of his personnel are afraid of him and do not want to risk their job by speaking out.
But now, as it happens when someone dies, because he is leaving, everyone is speaking of how good, honorable and distinguished he has been; but it is up to me to speak out.
Brad Jerbic has not even had the decency to show the people of Las Vegas good manners by dressing like a normal city employee; he dressed like a bum; some of those homeless people who hang out around the
downtown area dress better than he does.
His hair looks like he has not washed it in months and his jeans, which the local reporters compliment so much, look like they haven’t been washed in a year.
No one dislikes Senator Harry Reid more than me, but when the downtown golden boy Tony Hsieh showed up to meet with the U.S. Senator and Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate in a T-shirt, this newspaper and I criticized the man — who every politician and city official adores so much — for disrespecting that national figure, even if I dislike him so much.
I am an old-fashioned person. I believe in the right attire for the occasion: to go to court, to go to work and to meet with people, even if we disagree or dislike the person.
My name is Rolando Larraz, and as always, I approved this column.
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Rolando Larraz is Editor in Chief of the Las Vegas Tribune. His column appears weekly in this newspaper. To contact Rolando Larraz, email him at: Rlarraz@lasvegastribune.com or at 702-272-4634.