JUDGE WILLIAM KEPHART
Kephart is a 53 year native of Clark County, and was raised in Clark County. He has been married 25 years and has two children and one grand child. He graduated from Basic High School in 1979. He attended the University of Nevada Las Vegas, receiving a Bachelor of Arts and Letters degree in Criminal Justice. He then attended Cleveland - Marshall College of Law, earning his Juris Doctorate in May 1988 in the top 10 percentage. In addition to being a member of the Nevada Bar Association, he is also a member of the Clark County Bar Association, the National District Attorney's Association, former and founding member of the Clark County Prosecutors Association, the Stop DUI Organization and Pedestrian Safety Task Force. He is licensed to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and all Nevada Federal and State courts. He has also served as special prosecutor for the counties of Lincoln and Lyon. He is currently Las Vegas Township Justice of the Peace, Department 6 since being elected in 2010, and preside over the Veterans Treatment Court for Las Vegas Township Justice Court. He was named one of the Outstanding Young Men of America. He is a lifetime member of the Boy Scouts of America, having earned the ranking of Eagle Scout, the highest honor in the organization and continues to participate in this organization by serving as an assistant scout master on several occasions. He is also a member of the Order of the Arrow Brotherhood, and current Board member of the Helldorado and founding member of Basic High School Alumni Foundation.
Kephart began his career working in 1986 as a law clerk with the Deputy City Attorney in Las Vegas. In 1987 and 1988, he held the position of Chief Law Clerk for the Federal District Court, Judge David Dowd in Akron Ohio. Once passing the bar in 1988, he worked as a Deputy City Attorney in Las Vegas. He then was recruited by the Clark County District Attorney 's office and joined the office as a deputy district attorney in 1990. He was assigned to various units within the district attorney's office, including the special victims and major violators units. He was also instrumental in starting up the office's first DUI specialized team. He is one of the first instructors in DUI Law for members of the bar in the continuing legal education programs. In 1994, Kephart became a Chief Deputy over a general litigation team within the District Attorney's office. While assigned to the District Attorney's Special Victim’s team, he was instrumental in obtaining grant funding for internet crimes against children. This grant started the Forensic Computer Team within the Crimes Against Women and Children unit. He was subsequently named Chief Deputy District Attorney in the Special Victims Litigation Unit. In 2003, he was named Chief of the Habitual Offender Unit and held that position for seven years. Kephart has been an instructor in all police academies in Southern Nevada. He has presented a number of instructional seminars at various schools within Clark County, including UNLV, University of Phoenix, and the Community College of Southern Nevada
During his career, Kephart has prosecuted thousands of cases, ranging from misdemeanor traffic offenses to felony murders, handling from arraignment to appeal, 133 Jury trials, and have won all but three. He had a 97% conviction rate in felony jury trials. Some of most notable murder trials involved John "Polar Bear" Butler who led the Independent Nazi Skins, a racist group; and Robert Byford and Christopher Williams, two young violators who brutally murdered a high school classmate. He also handled, through resolution, the state's portion of the Laughlin River Run case involving the members of the notorious Hells Angels and Mongols groups.
Trials Presided Over:
As a Justice of the Peace, Kephart has presided over 150 criminal trials and 35 civil trials.
Desire to Run for Judicial Seat:
Kephart's experience on the Justice Court bench has shown him that although we have some very good people in our judicial system, more needs to be done to open the courts so honest, hard-working people have access to quality legal representation. As a judge, he has continued to put an emphasis on victim’s rights while making sure violent, repeat offenders are dealt with strongly and justly. That is what leads him to seek a seat on the Clark County District Court bench. He wants to use his experience both as a judge and as a former prosecutor to protect the public from those who continually prey on the least fortunate of our community. In addition, he hopes to restore and continue the faith and trust people place in the judiciary by being an honest, ethical and forthright jurist.
Work History Qualifications:
Prior to joining the Justice Court, he spent years protecting the rights of victims and working to make sure Nevada had integrity within the legal system.
Previous Election Experience:
Kephart had an unsuccessful run for Dept 10 District Court in 2008. He successfully ran for Justice of the Peace, Dept 6 in 2010 winning 60% of the vote.
Qualities Fit to Serve as a Judge:
As a lifelong resident of Southern Nevada, Kephart cares deeply about the people in Clark County. Our citizen’s deserve the most experienced and qualified judges sitting on the District Court bench. He is a strong believer that in order to judge multiple issues and deal with many different people and problems, one must have extensive experience. Because he has practiced before every court in Clark County Justice Courts, District Courts the Nevada Supreme Court and many judges from other Counties, he has seen what works and what does not. In addition, his experience on the Justice Court bench has given him insight no other candidate possesses. As an attorney, he had to navigate through thousands of cases and have seen a variety of issues that one would only obtain through many years of litigation. He grew up in this Valley and care deeply for the people that have made it their home. He is very proud to be a judge in this community and wants to continue that service by being elected to the Clark County District Court bench.
Kephart was subject to a single bar complaint; however, it was found to be unsubstantiated.
To Speed Process & Minimize Case Delays:
Kephart had the following to say about speeding up the process and minimizing case delays:
"I have always been a believer that the parties need to be heard; however a sufficient reading of a brief should resolve any issues in time delay. In the event there are no briefs, I have been relatively comfortable with identifying issues readily, and address or directing the litigants to those issues. I also toyed with the idea of using a timer to motivate the litigants to address just the issues."
Marcek grew up in the Las Vegas valley and earned his law degree at McGeorge College of Law. He trains and supervises first year law students as Coordinator of Community Service UNLV’s Boyd School of Law. Marcek has been active serving as president of the Summerlin Rotary Club and operating his practice in the areas of family law, employment law and personal injury.