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September 4, 2015

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Armed assemblyman was prepared for a shootout, report says

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Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

Assemblyman Steven Brooks is seen on the third day of the 2011 legislative session Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011, in Carson City.

Updated Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2013 | 6:16 p.m.

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Marilyn Kirkpatrick

Assemblyman Steven Brooks said he was “not afraid to die” and was “willing to have a shootout with the police,” his relatives told officers before the North Las Vegas Democrat was arrested for threatening the Democratic leader, according to a law enforcement report obtained by the Las Vegas Sun.

According to the report, Las Vegas City Councilman Ricki Barlow started the chain of events that ultimately led to Brooks’ arrest on charges of threatening a public official, Assembly Speaker-elect Marilyn Kirkpatrick.

Barlow told police on Saturday evening he had spoken to Brooks, who had once served as Barlow’s assistant at the city of Las Vegas. Brooks, according to Barlow, “needed help,” the North Las Vegas police report said.

“Councilman Barlow believed Assemblyman Brooks had a loaded gun in his possession, and he believed there was a real danger to Speaker Kirkpatrick,” according to one of the officer’s statements.

Brooks was arrested by police Saturday at 5:27 p.m. After his release from jail Sunday, Brooks declared his innocence to area journalists.

In his car, police found a .357 Smith and Wesson revolver inside a white shoebox, along with 41 live rounds of ammunition.

Brooks’ wife told police that a friend in the security business had given Brooks the firearm. His wife also told police she was worried about him and that his “mental health has been getting worse.”

According to the report, Brooks never personally confronted Kirkpatrick with the weapon.

Kirpatrick called police after Sen. Kelvin Atkinson relayed to her Brooks’ threats. According to the report, Barlow had called Atkinson to warn him of Brooks’ statements.

Kirkpatrick told police that Atkinson wrote in a text message that “no one should feel safe around Brooks” and that he should be kept out of the legislative building.

Kirkpatrick, who “was visibly upset and crying,” told police that “she was in fear that Brooks was going to come to her house and either kill or harm her,” according to the documents.

Earlier today, Brooks’ lawyer Mitchell Posin, told the Las Vegas Sun: “His mood is very positive. He certainly feels like he hasn't done anything illegal.”

Posin said Brooks is in a Las Vegas-area hospital being treated for a bleeding digestive system. He was released from the hospital Tuesday afternoon and had gone home to rest, Posin said.

A spokesman for the city of Las Vegas, for which Brooks is a management analyst, said he is on leave without pay as of Tuesday.

Also Tuesday, Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto will decide on whether to prosecute Brooks, rather than the Clark County District Attorney's Office.

“Our office has primary jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute state elected officials, but we have yet to receive the prosecution referral,” said spokeswoman Edie Cartwright.

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