Brooks Pleads Not Guilty in California Case

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

BARSTOW, Calif. (AP) - An ousted Nevada assemblyman has pleaded not guilty to charges stemming from a high-speed chase in California that ended with a violent struggle.

Steven Brooks entered his plea Tuesday to four counts, including resisting an officer, felony evading and assault on a police animal. A preliminary hearing is set for April 9.

Brooks was arrested Thursday near the California city of Victorville after police say he attacked a police dog with a wrench and had a struggle with officers.

If convicted of all the counts, Brooks could face a maximum sentence of five years, four months in prison. A phone message left for defense attorney Mitchell Posin was not immediately returned.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

A former Nevada assemblyman was charged Tuesday after police in California said he led them on a freeway chase that ended with a violent struggle hours after he was ousted from office for bizarre behavior.

The counts against Steven Brooks, 41, include resisting an officer, felony evading and assault on a police animal, according to prosecutors in San Bernardino County. He is scheduled to be arraigned later Tuesday.

If convicted of all the counts, Brooks could face a maximum sentence of five years, four months in prison. A phone message left for attorney Mitchell Posin, who represents Brooks, was not immediately returned.

Last week, Brooks became the first person in Nevada history to be voted out of office by his colleagues in the Legislature after they cited concerns for their safety and a bizarre series of public incidents.

Brooks was arrested Thursday near the California city of Victorville after police say he attacked a police dog with a wrench and had a struggle with officers.

The chase followed a call from a tow truck driver who argued with a motorist about the cost of fixing a flat tire on a freeway shoulder in Barstow.

It was the third time Brooks has been arrested this year, and it came just hours after his colleagues deemed the Democrat from North Las Vegas to be too dangerous to serve out his term.

Brooks was first arrested on Jan. 19 for investigation of threatening other legislators, including Assembly Democratic Speaker Marilyn Kirkpatrick. Police said a search turned up a gun and ammunition in his car.

He was arrested again on Feb. 10 - less than a week after being sworn into office - following a domestic dispute at the home of his estranged wife, where he allegedly tried to grab an officer's gun.

Brooks faces a court hearing in May in Las Vegas on one felony and three lesser charges.


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