Judge approves plea deal in ex-Clark County prosecutor's drug case

A state court judge said Monday she'll accept a plea deal that will give a former Las Vegas prosecutor who handled the Bruno Mars and Paris Hilton drug cases three years' probation and a chance to clear his record in a felony cocaine possession case.

Clark County District Court Judge Carolyn Ellsworth said she found a clerical error during her review of the case, but said she found no reason to throw out the plea agreement involving former Deputy District Attorney David Schubert. The judge scheduled sentencing Feb. 27.

Ellsworth's ruling came after another state court judge took himself off the case in December, saying prosecutors should be held to a higher standard and the plea deal was too lenient.

Ellsworth said she reviewed why the state attorney general's office decided to drop three felonies including weapons possession and drug conspiracy, and found no abuse of prosecutorial discretion.

Schubert, 48, declined outside court to talk about the case. He pleaded guilty in September as a first offender to felony unlawful possession of a controlled substance not for sale.

Schubert resigned from the district attorney's office shortly after his arrest last March after buying a $40 rock of crack cocaine from a man who Las Vegas police watched get out of Schubert's car, go into an apartment complex and return. Police also confiscated an unregistered 9mm handgun from Schubert's car.

Schubert had been a prosecutor for 10 years, including two years as Clark County district attorney office liaison to a federal drug task force. He is now a private defense attorney handling criminal and family matters.

Among cases he handled were plea deals that got Hilton, now 30, a year of probation on misdemeanor cocaine possession and obstruction charges. The celebrity socialite was arrested after police said 0.8 grams of cocaine fell out of her handbag following a Las Vegas Strip traffic stop in August 2010.

A judge recently dismissed a first offender case for Mars, 26, on a felony cocaine possession charge. The Grammy-winning pop star, whose real name is Peter Hernandez, stayed out of trouble for a year and met other conditions of a plea deal after acknowledging in court that he had 2.6 grams of cocaine after a performance at a Hard Rock Hotel & Casino nightclub.