The legal system is divided into two areas: civil and criminal law. Separate courts govern (control) these two areas. One of the most confusing things about the legal system is the difference between these two.
The major differences have to do with who takes the case to court and the reason for the case.
The criminal law system handles all cases that involve violations of criminal law such as harassment, assault, murder, theft, etc. A criminal complaint involves the abuser being charged with a crime, the prosecutor (or district attorney) is the one in control over the case. It is the county/state that has brought the case against the abuser, not the victim. It is possible that if the victim does not want the case to continue, the prosecutor might decide to drop the criminal charges, but this is not always the case.
Civil law is the law of the state relating to private and civilian affairs. This consists of the body of laws regulating private matters, distinct from criminal, political or military matters.
The constable, one of the oldest law enforcement agencies in Nevada, is an elected position that comes with a four-year term. Empowered with the authority of a peace officer by state law, the constable serves a vital role in the legal process by executing the orders of the court in civil and criminal matters, small claims and evictions. The constable also provides a variety of legal functions.
April 16. Civil: A caller from Arizona says a third party is trying to gain entrance to the caller’s property to collect personal belongings and is advised this is a civil matter at 10:45 a.m. in the 100 Valley View Lane.
Burglary: A caller says her door was left open and someone came in and took electronics. The caller’s son said he knows who is responsible and will have the items returned at 4:47 p.m. in the 700 block of Sandra Drive.
Civil: A man would like an officer to stand by while he picks up his belongings at 10:30 p.m. in the 1300 block of Potosi Street.
Thought for the day: All three of these calls are civil matters and our days are filled with various forms of the same. Please be an adult when things don’t work out and separate amicably if possible.
April 17. See person: A man would like to speak to an officer about criminal activity he has observed at 1:24 a.m. in the 800 block of Nevada Way.
Family disturbance: A caller reports a man and woman fighting for several hours but they decide to separate for a while at 12:34 p.m. in the 1300 block of Darlene Way.
DUI: A caller believes the driving pattern observed must be from a drunk driver however it is not at 2 p.m. in the area of Railroad Pass.
Thought for the day: Cellphones today extend our eyes and ears so be on your best behavior.
April 18. Destruction of property: A caller reports that books have been ripped apart and thrown all over the area at 9:13 a.m. in the 600 block of Avenue D.
Reckless: A truck driver reports seeing a pickup truck driving recklessly and he is out with the subject having an argument and wants to sign a citation and take the subject to court at 11:47 p.m. in the 1200 block of Nevada Highway.
Thought for the day: Private citizens can sign a citation against another person when they witness a misdemeanor crime. Another reason to be on your best behavior.
April 19. Drunk: A caller reports an intoxicated person trying to get car keys back so that person can drive but decides not to when told how expensive it will be at 12:31 a.m. in the 1500 block of Bermuda Dunes Drive.
Assist: A person in the lobby wants to report someone missing after dropping him off at the hospital. The man cannot be found at 10:20 a.m. in the 1000 block of Arizona Street.
Drunk: An extremely intoxicated woman fell from the overlook and has been rescued by an off-duty officer at 1:52 p.m. in the area of Nevada Way and Avenue I.
Thought for the day: Sometimes people go to jail to keep them from injuring themselves or others. Drink responsibly.
April 20. Missing: A man is in the lobby to report his wife missing and states she has mental impairment; however, when he finds her back at their hotel room she states he is the one with the impairment at 6:01 a.m. in the 1000 block of Arizona Street.
DUI: A reckless driver is reported passing people in the breakdown lane and trying to engage others in road rage but will have lots of time to consider his actions awaiting court at 12:47 a.m. in the area of St. Jude’s Street and U.S. Highway 93.
Thought for the day: It’s always a good day when we get an impaired and dangerous driver off the road.
April 21. Missing: A woman states she stopped her car for gas in Boulder City but the man that was following her kept driving and she cannot find him at 6:47 a.m. in the area of 1600 Nevada Highway.
Domestic: A woman states her juvenile daughter is being abusive and out of control. She gets a visit to juvenile detention to understand the alternatives at 8:18 a.m. in the 600 block of Avenue M.
Thought for the day: The elderly traveler discovered he wasn’t following the correct vehicle just before he got to Tucson, Ariz., so all were united and continued on.
April 22. Domestic: A person reports being beat up but then hangs up. The person calls back and reports being really been beat up now and wants police and medical assistance at 11:12 a.m. in the 800 block of Benita Place.
Suspicious: A man is soliciting for money by telling folks he just got out of prison at 11:36 p.m. in the 800 block of Nevada Way.
Thought for the day: Using prison as a reason for needing money may not be the best tactic.
Call(s) of the week: A caller reports an older muscle car speeding in the area prior to having the hood fly off. The vehicle is now parked and unoccupied. The registered owner comes into the police department later in the week to report damage to his vehicle by a repairman at 3:55 p.m. in the 600 block of Wells Road.
Have a great week.
Tina Ransom is a dispatcher with Boulder City Police Department. She is coordinator of the Boulder City Citizen’s Academy.