Reporters’ Notebook

CNN’S CROTCHETY COMMENTATOR JACK CAFFERTY appears to have made his peace with the people of Nevada.

Cafferty was born and raised in Reno, where he had a childhood he calls “very dysfunctional, sometimes violent.” In a book he penned that was published earlier this year, he wrote, “My folks were alcoholics who, between them, were married 11 times. It would have been an even dozen, but my dad accidentally killed one of his fiancées.”

Reno, he wrote, was a place where weakness was not tolerated and you had to look out for yourself.

Last week, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer mentioned to his audience on “The Situation Room” that he’ll be in Las Vegas on Nov. 15 to moderate a Democratic presidential debate.

“That’s in the key state of Nevada, coming up, November 15. A lovely state indeed,” Blitzer said. “Let’s go to Jack Cafferty. He’s joining us for ‘The Cafferty File.’ Aren’t you from Nevada, Jack?”

Cafferty answered, “Indeed I am. And a lovely place it is. You be nice to my buddies out there when you go out to moderate that debate. Those are good people.”

MOLLY BALL

A MAN’S THREE-HOUR STANDOFF WITH POLICE came to a sleepy conclusion on Oct. 26.

Officers and SWAT team members surrounded a home in the 4900 block of Harris Avenue around 10 a.m. after a man locked himself in his house and claimed to have enough explosives to blow up six homes.

Unable to negotiate with the man, police detonated a flash-bomb and entered the home.

There they found him passed out drunk.

No explosives were found at the residence.

BETH WALTON

PHOTOGRAPHS OF PROMINENT LAWMEN ADORN A LOBBY WALL at the North Las Vegas Police Department headquarters. But one photograph was missing last week: that of police Chief Mark Paresi.

Mayor Michael Montandon said Tuesday that Paresi will no longer serve as the city’s police chief. Some cited low morale for Paresi’s exit.

A local television journalist announced when the story broke that Paresi’s photo had been removed from the wall because of his dismissal.

Turns out the photo was taken down months ago, perhaps foreshadowing Paresi’s troubles. A person working at the desk told the Review-Journal it was removed by employees after someone defaced it.

DAVID KIHARA

LATE NIGHT TALK SHOW HOST CRAIG FERGUSON told viewers he was in Las Vegas recently, had played some slots and won $350.

“I saw a Drew Carey game there,” said Ferguson, who played Nigel Wick, Carey’s boss, on “The Drew Carey Show.”

“You know you’ve made it when there’s a game named after you. It was called ‘The All-You-Can-Eat Buffet.'”

TWO PAROLE AND PROBATION OFFICERS WERE GRUMBLING last week how hard it is to track down the people they supervise. Even a parolee who was shot seven times in the leg and now uses a wheelchair can rarely be found at home, said officer Arpa Aghajani.

The young man apparently isn’t letting his disability hold him back.

He told Aghajani he’s “gonna make it like 50 Cent.”

“He’s out there bangin’ in a chair,” she said. “Ride or die.”

BETH WALTON

During the Darren Mack trial, a juror asked Family Court Judge Chuck Weller, whom Mack is accused of trying to assassinate, about any behavior Mack might have exhibited prior to the shooting that caused him concern.

The judge responded that he thought Mack might have been behind a ruse played on Weller two weeks before the shooting. Someone had taken out an advertisement in a local shopper magazine, advertising a bidding event for a Harley at the judge’s home on a Saturday at 7:30 a.m.

Weller went to the courthouse early that weekend morning to get some work done.

“My wife called me and said all these bikers were at our front door wondering where the auction was.”

K.C. HOWARD

DURING HALLOWEEN, PAROLE AND PROBATION OFFICER RICHARD AN couldn’t find a single sex offender at the home where he was registered. A woman dressed as a pumpkin answered one door.

“We kicked him out,” she said.

Offering the officer some candy, she explained they had made their friend leave the home, near Walnut and Craig roads, not because of his sexual assault conviction, but because they no longer wanted to abide by his probation terms, which prohibit possessing alcohol. She then showed the officer a newly built bar in her living room.

BETH WALTON

ON WEDNESDAY, SCHOOL BOARD MEMBER SHIRLEY BARBER was telling a reporter about how School Board President Ruth Johnson was rude to a 60-year-old woman during an Oct. 25 public meeting. At that meeting, Rose Moore initially was denied the chance to speak by Johnson. Moore claims Johnson’s actions led to her being roughed up by police and to having a heart attack because of the stress.

Barber said Johnson was out of line during the meeting.

Johnson would never get away with speaking to her in the tone she spoke to Moore, Barber claimed.

“I can deal with her. She was actually being rude to me (earlier in the meeting). But if she gets too rude, she’ll be crying again.”

Barber was referring to a meeting in December 2006 in which she and Johnson got into an argument. During that meeting, Johnson said she had developed a thick skin after more than 10 years on the board, but then began to cry.

ANTONIO PLANAS

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