Republican statewide candidates Adam Laxalt and Wes Duncan claim the scandal brewing around their continued support of an alleged rapist and admitted sexual harasser, Storey County Sheriff Gerald Antinoro, is purely political. But no matter where they go, the attorney general and his former deputy are dogged by questions about why they continue to protect a sexual predator.
Last week, Laxalt told KLAS his office was investigating Antinoro, and used that excuse to avoid renouncing Antinoro’s endorsement. But as evidence mounts that Laxalt’s “investigation” may be a sham, questions are swirling around whether the attorney general is actually looking into the sheriff’s gross misconduct, or if it’s all a ruse to avoid disavowing his political ally.
KNPR: State of Nevada, guest Jon Ralston of The Nevada Independent
June 7, 2018
RALSTON: “There’s also no evidence of any investigation at all. None. Except for Adam Laxalt and Wes Duncan saying there’s an investigation. There’s none. Melanie Keener, who was the central figure in the allegations against Antinoro, a former deputy who has sued the county, has not even been interviewed, according to her, by the attorney general’s office, after weeks of saying that there’s an investigation. […] Laxalt’s office is refusing to even comment about this. Here’s why this is significant. Laxalt has tried to dodge any questions about Antinoro.
“[Antinoro] is actually saying this is just the media and the Democrats out to get him. The same spin, by the way, that Adam Laxalt is using not to answer questions about Antinoro and saying its become a political football but there’s an investigation going on. […] If they’re doing an investigation and they haven’t contacted the central witness and the chief investigator has told people that the statute of limitations is expired on some of these allegations, what are they investigating?”
Reno Gazette-Journal: Laxalt quiet on investigation into Sheriff Antinoro, a backer accused of sexual misconduct
By James DeHaven
June 7, 2018
“Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt is keeping quiet amid mounting questions about his office’s investigation into an embattled Storey County lawman and campaign supporter accused of sexual misconduct.
“The first-term attorney general last week revealed during a forum with the Las Vegas CBS affiliate his office was looking into those accusations, though he did not take questions after a Wednesday campaign event in Carson City and did not immediately return requests for comment on the substance of the probe on Thursday.”
The Nevada Appeal: Nevada AG candidate: Office investigating Storey County sheriff
By Geoff Dornan
June 6, 2018
“Republican Attorney General candidate Wes Duncan said Wednesday the attacks on himself and Attorney General Adam Laxalt over the endorsement by Storey County Sheriff Gerald Antinoro are purely political.”
The Nevada Independent: Serious questions raised whether Laxalt is actually investigating rural sheriff accused of wrongdoing
By Soni Brown
June 6, 2018
“A top official in the attorney general’s office asserted that allegations of sexual misconduct and perjury made against a controversial Storey County sheriff are outside the statute of limitations, according to a lawyer for a developer who has urged Adam Laxalt to investigate the matter. That same official, investigations chief Ron Swanson, also told a tribal police chief that the attorney general’s office would not be looking into the allegations.
“And the deputy who made the original allegations against Sheriff Gerald Antinoro, which were found to be credible by the county, said through a spokesperson that she had not been contacted by anyone in the attorney general’s office regarding Antinoro or her lawsuit.
“These revelations come against the backdrop of Laxalt refusing to talk about the allegations against Antinoro, who has had more than 10 complaints filed against him, by claiming there is an ongoing investigation. But Joey Gilbert, the Reno attorney for the developers of the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center who have tried to recall the sheriff, raised serious questions about whether a probe actually is occurring.”
KLAS: Politics NOW with Steve Sebelius and Patrick Walker
June 3, 2018
SEBELIUS: “First of all, the AG’s office usually doesn’t confirm or deny investigations, so I think Laxalt kind of let the cat out of the bag there. But when I tried to follow up with his office, the spokeswoman said they would have no further comment.
“Second, I don’t see that renouncing an endorsement would pose any larger a conflict for the prosecutors in his office than simply accepting an endorsement in the first place, which Laxalt clearly has done. And prosecution decisions are official business and endorsements are political, so they really should be separate. But there’s a conflict, I think, for Laxalt either way.”