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Jurisdiction: U.S. (SUPERIOR COURTS/TRIAL-LEVEL/COUNTY LEVEL/) Judical Biography:
Judge Michelle Leavitt is a Superior Court Judge in Nevada
Judge Michelle Leavitt was born in 1965 in Las Vegas,
Nevada. She graduated from Las Vegas High School in 1983
and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 1987. Judge
Leavitt graduated from California Western School of Law
cum laude in 1994. She was a member of the Law Review
International Law Journal. Upon graduation from law
school, she began work with the law firm of Alverson,
Taylor, Mortensen, Nelson & Sanders, where she gained
considerable experience in medical malpractice and other
forms of civil litigation.
In July 1998, Judge Leavitt became a sole practitioner,
specializing in a broad range of criminal defense and civil
litigation matters. In January, 1999, she was appointed by a
unanimous vote of the City Council to fill a vacancy on the
Municipal Court. Judge Leavitt was re-elected twice to her
seat in 1999 and 2001.
In March, 2002, Judge Leavitt submitted an application for
an open District Court seat. The seat was a gubernatorial
appointment and in May, 2002, Governor Kenny Guinn
appointed Judge Leavitt as a District Judge in Department 12
of the Eighth Judicial District Court. Judge Leavitt was
sworn into office on May 10, 2002.
Judge Leavitt, is a member of the
State Bar of Nevada, Clark County Bar Association and the
Nevada Judges Association. Judge Leavitt also serves as
member on the Criminal Task Force of the Judicial
Assessment Commission; the Education Commission of the
Nevada Judges Association, and the Supreme Courtís
Mandatory Sentencing Review Commission.
Watch video of Judge Michelle Leavitt order a lawyer who appeared drunk during a trial to take a breathalyzer test in her courtroom. Judge Michelle Leavitt declared a mistrial after the alcohol test showed the defendant's lawyer was drunk with a 0.075 blood alcohol content. The defendant was facing a possible life sentence while on trial.
Judge Michelle Leavitt did not find the defense lawyer in contempt of court despite having every reason to do so. Judge Leavitt demonstrated exceptional patience with this lawyer in spite of all of the twisted stories he told in defense of his drunken stammering during the trial.