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Nye County commissioners appoint Michele Fiore as Pahrump justice of the peace

Michelle Rindels
Michelle Rindels
CourtsLocal Government

Nye County commissioners have appointed former assemblywoman and Las Vegas City Councilwoman Michele Fiore to serve as a Pahrump justice of the peace.

The unanimous decision came after commissioners spent about four hours interviewing candidates, including asking how they felt about allowing guns in courtrooms. In making the motion to approve Fiore, Commissioner Donna Cox cited the former lawmaker’s ambition, knowledge and recommendation from former President Donald Trump, as well as Fiore’s plans to build in Nye County.

Fiore, who said she had been renting a house in the county since mid-November and is “very excited to be a Pahrump girl,” said she was working on her bachelor’s degree and intended to become a licensed attorney in the future.

“I'm excited about the learning curve. I'm not going to sit here and tell you I know everything — I will tell you that I don't know what I don't know,” she told commissioners. “Becoming a justice of the peace, I know, will be very exciting. And I will go to whatever lengths I have to to make sure that I have all of the knowledge.”

Fiore was a Republican lawmaker in the Assembly before serving a term on the Las Vegas City Council and losing a bid to be state treasurer last month. A gun enthusiast, Fiore appeared in a campaign commercial shooting beer bottles with the labels “vaccine mandate” and “CRT” (critical race theory), and said she didn’t mind people bringing guns into courtrooms because “an armed society is a polite society.”

“If we get in a gun battle, I'll probably win. So I'm cool with you bringing a gun in the courtroom,” she said.

A public commenter who called in after the decision said Fiore’s appointment would put Pahrump on the map and be national news.

“I think the left is gonna go berserk,” said the commenter, who identified herself as Amy Nelson.

Kent Jasperson, the city’s previous justice of the peace, one of two such judges, died in August, the Pahrump Valley Times reported.

Other applicants for the open justice court seat included Nye County Commissioner Leonardo Blundo, who was did not win re-election, was charged with felony domestic battery earlier this year and ended up withdrawing from consideration before the vote; William Hockstedler, who finished fifth in the Republican primary for U.S. Senate in 2022; former Nye County Sheriff Sharon Wehrly, who lost her race for re-election this year; and William Carns, the Nye County GOP chairman.

Read more background on Fiore and the justice court vacancy in our previous story here.


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