During my era in Cuba, when my father was a very important government personality, my two uncles on my mother’s side of the family and I spent a long time without talking to my father — but when I learned that I could save his life if I happened to be with him when anti-government revolutionaries were going to kill him, I made peace with him and rode with him in his official police car with the two body guards (they called it an escort) and the chauffeur every day until the danger of an attempt on his life passed.
My brother and I were not as close as we both would have liked to be, but when he got sick, I visited him on a daily basis and I even closed his eyes the day he passed away.
My sister and I may not communicate on a daily basis, but I believe that if she ever needed me, I would be there for her and I am one hundred percent sure that if I ever needed her, or she knew she could do anything for me, she would do it and she’d be there for me.
That is the way the three of us were raised; family, right or wrong, is always family and that is the way I have conducted myself all my life, adding my friends into that mix.
I may not be a party person; I don’t attend many parties, but if anyone in my small circle of friends is in the hospital, has a loss in the family or is incarcerated for any reason, I’ll be there for them and my history speaks loudly for me.
I am very proud to be loyal to my close circle of friends, because I try to be honest and sincere; there are not that many people that I want to be friends with and I am not going to mention anyone in particular because that would be out of line.
Back in 2002 when local attorney Jackie Glass announced that she was challenging sitting Judge Jeff Sobel, right away I jumped in and give her my support as well as the endorsement of the Las Vegas Tribune.
I supported her even against many local attorneys that got upset with me for supporting someone that was challenging their “good friend,” Judge Sobel.
When I read last week that her husband Steve Wolfson had a party to kick-off his reelection campaign for Clark County District Attorney, I was very sad and disappointed. No, not because our District Attorney was running for re-election; I was, and still am, sad because since 2002, I had the honor of being invited to every campaign kick-off that Steve Wolfson has had.
From running for city council twice, for District Attorney twice, plus supporting his appointment to the office after the one before him ran out of office, I have mentioned many times that I used to visit his office, and miss my visits to Steve Wolfson’s law office and chit-chatting with him for a few minutes out of his busy schedule; he always had time for me.
I saw the Wolfson daughters grow up and I was honored to be the first journalist to have his daughter and her father — District Attorney Steve Wolfson — appear live on my daily radio show.
However, seems like now my opinion on the case of Kirstin Lobato has changed my position with District Attorney Steve Wolfson; it seems like I am no longer in his circle of acquaintances and I am no longer invited to his campaign kick-offs and I am sure that probably the doors of his office at the Regional Justice Center are no longer open to me or to the Las Vegas Tribune.
My opinion on the Kirstin Lobato case has been well-known for the last fourteen years since she was sentenced for a crime we all know she did not commit and I have openly maintained my voice and that of this newspaper on the injustice that former judge Valorie Vega displayed against a young homeless lady that was railroaded by a corrupt District Attorney (Steve Wolfson WAS NOT in office at that time) and an ambitious prosecutor, as well as a weak elected district court judge controlled by a despicable elected official with a Napoleon mentality.
I have never officially met Kirstin Lobato; during her second trial I had the opportunity of exchanging a few words with her, but nothing more. I believe that her case is a unique and embarrassing display of injustice in our community.
Out of respect to Steve Wolfson, I tried to stay out of such a controversial case, but in good faith, I cannot stop anyone else from exposing the judicial corruption that has always existed within our law and order.
I cannot in good faith stop anyone from writing about Kirstin Lobato, and I cannot in good faith forget the quote of Voltaire which has been the motto of this newspaper since its first insertion nineteen years ago: “I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
How can I insult the faithful readers of this newspaper if I, as the captain of this ship, tell Hans Sherrer not to write about the injustice that is evident in the Kirstin Lobato case? Was it not in the first place the reason for publishing the Las Vegas Tribune — to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?
I have enough respect for Steve Wolfson not to discuss the Lobato case with him because he was not the District Attorney at the time Miss Lobato was framed, persecuted and condemned to an unjustifiable incarceration.
I hope Steve Wolfson has enough respect for me not to ask me to stop exposing the corruption as we see it in Kirstin Lobato’s case.
I hope my opinion of Steve Wolfson was not wrong and that the next time he runs for office, I’ll be invited to the campaign kick-off; I am willing to wait until he announces his candidature for governor.
My name is Rolando Larraz, and as always, I approved this column.
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.