Judge’s Order Stops Henderson and Laughlin Constables from Further Law Violations

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Las Vegas Nevada, Clark County District Court Judge Ron Israel signs an Order granting Las Vegas Constable John Bonaventura and the Las Vegas Constable's office an injunction against Henderson Constable Earl Mitchell, and Laughlin Constable Jordan Ross, restraining them from conducting, soliciting, or accepting any business from the Las Vegas Constable’s Jurisdiction. They are to only serve in their own Township.

A final decision was decided in a recent lawsuit filed, by Las Vegas Constable John Bonaventura against the Henderson and Laughlin Constables after they refused to act in accordance with a recent Legislative Council Bureau (LCB) opinion. (Case # A-12-663876-C Department XXVIII in the Eight Judicial District Court of Clark County Nevada) "With this recent Order, they will be forced to abide by the law", Constable Bonaventura said. According to the court record, constables must be accountable to the people that elect them. The Court Order states, "In looking at this statute, the plain meaning could not be more clear."

According to transcripts of this case, Jordan Ross, Constable of Laughlin Township, went so far as to establish office space within Las Vegas Township and to start a division of their agency called the “Las Vegas Bureau.” This move was widely regarded as misleading and a public safety issue. The words “Las Vegas Bureau” were embroidered on their uniforms, which were shockingly similar to the Las Vegas Metro SWAT uniforms. The similarity of the uniforms used by the Laughlin Deputies prompted Sheriff Doug Gillespie’s Office to order them to change their uniforms to prevent being mistaken for members of the LVMPD.

The court records also show that under the direction of Henderson Township Constable Earl Mitchell, Deputy Director Steve Kilgore solicited civil processing work from law offices and collection agencies located within the Las Vegas Township.

Constable John Bonaventura explained that there were several incidents where complaints were filed with the Las Vegas Township Constable’s Office for the actions of deputies from Henderson and Laughlin. In the court proceedings there was testimony that citizens were mistaking Henderson and Laughlin deputies as being Las Vegas Deputy Constables.

As seen on Local News Las Vegas Channel 3 TV, "constables crossing jurisdictional boundaries to collect a debt was the start of the 'Constable Turf Wars'”, according to reporter Mackenzie Warren. The recent injunction puts an end to the 'Constable Turf Wars'. It also makes it clear, that other Constables are prohibited from entering the Las Vegas Township in any form of or representation of an official capacity. "I couldn't believe that they did not respect the Legislative opinion since it was very clear, so I had to seek a legal court injunction to enforce the law." said Bonaventura.

Following the 2010 election, there were changes for the Constables of Clark County. The Las Vegas Township Constable’s Office saw the election of John Bonaventura, a former State Assemblyman with law enforcement experience and an extensive business background. As a sworn law enforcement officer, Constable Bonaventura has taken his oath of office seriously.

The Order comes after the Defendants filed an appeal, which was denied by District Court Judge Ron Israel. District Court Judge Ron Israel agreed with Plaintiff Bonaventura and a recent Legislative opinion. The Judge sent a clear legal message regarding the conduct of Constables infringing into other Townships. Within the Order it states "Once it is determined that a statute is being violated by a public official there should be a higher standard used similar to "Strict Scrutiny" in evaluating and preventing public harm." The injunction forces Henderson and Laughlin Constables to abide by the law.

Constable Bonaventura said "The Order makes it clear that constables in Nevada are not peace officers outside of their Townships and shall only serve in the Townships to which they are elected." If Henderson or Laughlin constables violate the Order they could face contempt of court charges.

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Lou Toomin, Public Information Officer
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