Former Nevada legislator and veteran trial attorney Ozzie Fumo announced Thursday that he will run for Clark County District Attorney in the 2022 election.
Fumo is seeking to unseat incumbent Steve Wolfson, who has served as the county’s top prosecutor since 2012, when he was appointed to the position. Last year, the 55-year-old Fumo left his position in the Nevada Assembly to run an unsuccessful campaign for a seat on the Nevada Supreme Court.
“The District Attorney’s office is a position from which enormous change can be made,” Fumo said in a press release. “If elected, it will be my goal to make Clark County a safer, healthier, and more just place for our entire community.”
Fumo has practiced law in Las Vegas since 1996, and is also an adjunct professor at UNLV’s Boyd Law School.
No other candidates have announced a bid to run against Wolfson, although there is a March deadline for filing in the June Democratic primary race.
Wolfson announced he would be seeking re-election in August.
Fumo said Thursday that increased support from others in the legal community encouraged him to run. He criticized Wolfson’s administration.
“If you’re the privileged and you happen to know (Wolfson), you get the sweetheart deal,” Fumo said.
Wolfson did not immediately respond to request for comment on Thursday.
Fumo said he would like to focus on restorative justice policies and reducing recidivism rates through programs such as the specialty treatment courts.
“You could put so much more effort into programs that cost a tenth of what incarceration does,” he said.
In Wolfson’s August announcement, he vowed to cut down on a backlog in criminal courts that have increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 67-year-old incumbent also pointed to a series of programs created under his watch, including a Conviction Integrity Unit, created in 2016 to review claims of actual innocence, along with diversion programs for people before and after they have been charged with low-level, nonviolent crimes.