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Report: Republican Joe Lombardo Oversaw a Record Spike in Murders as Clark County Sheriff

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A new report highlights how, under Joe Lombardo’s leadership as sheriff, Clark County saw a record spike in homicides.

The report indicates Lombardo’s actions had a direct and devastating impact on violent crime. After Lombardo implemented a major restructuring of the police department, Clark County saw a record 67 percent spike in homicides.

Lombardo’s changes “hindered law enforcement by decentralizing detectives and taking officers off of critical investigative and gang units,” and law enforcement experts, including the head of the Las Vegas Police Protective Association, blamed Lombardo’s actions as sheriff for the dramatic crime surge. This isn’t the first time Lombardo has been called out for breaking up LVMPD’s gang unit, with the Las Vegas Review-Journal reporting in 2016 that the change saw a “violent crime wave, with marked increases in rapes, robberies, assaults and homicides.”

The report notes that, “from 2020 to 2021, Clark County experienced a 49 percent increase in homicides, with the majority of them inflicted by gunshot. During the same time period, statewide rates of violent crime decreased by more than 9 percent as other counties across the state either maintained the same levels or saw decreases in homicide rates.”

The data follows recent reporting from the Nevada Current showing Joe Lombardo only showed up to his sheriff’s office roughly three times per week and missed work days to campaign for a promotion. In fact, Lombardo’s entire tenure as sheriff has been riddled with corruption and political maneuvering.

Gov. Sisolak, in contrast, has taken bold steps to support law enforcement. His gun safety reforms have driven Nevada crime rates to their lowest levels since 1985.

“Joe Lombardo loves to tout his ‘law-and-order’ agenda, but the fact is, crime soared as a result of his failed leadership,” said DGA Senior Communications Advisor Christina Amestoy. “Just like when he was sheriff, his policies as governor would make it harder for law enforcement officers to do their jobs and easier for criminals to get guns. Nevadans can’t trust Joe Lombardo to keep them safe.”