Embattled Judge Withdrawing Name for Re-Election

LAS VEGAS -- Judge Steven Jones, the embattled family court judge, is withdrawing his name for re-election, his attorney confirmed Monday.

Jones filed for re-election earlier this month, despite a decision by the Nevada Commission on Judicial Discipline that he had violated judicial ethics in a case involving his now-deceased girlfriend Lisa Willardson.

Willardson was a former prosecutor. She was found dead in her home the day after Christmas. The Clark County Coroner has yet to release her cause of death.

Her death came the same day that the commission found the judge broke ethical rules by presiding over cases handled by Willardson while the pair were dating.

The commission held a hearing Monday on the judge's punishment in the case, but his attorney told 8 News NOW no matter the decision by the commission the judge will not run for re-election.

During the hearing, witnesses lined up to claim Judge Jones interfered in court to protect his girlfriend.

Former Clark County District Attorney David Roger and other family court prosecutors said Jones was responsible for a deep division in family court.

Speaking by video conference in Reno, Judge Jones said he was "remorseful" and filled with "sorrow" at making what he called one mistake in his 25 years of service.

"I have received the reprimands, and the censures, and the attacks and the critiques. That is why my attorney announced I'm not running for re-re-election," Jones said.

Jones is also facing a separate federal indictment over his alleged involvement in a multi-million dollar investment fraud scheme.

Jones says he is innocent of that separate fraud charge.

It could be several days before the commission makes a decision on the judge's punishment.


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