Governor's divorce on hold

Lawyers for Gov. Jim Gibbons and first lady Dawn Gibbons, who has accused her husband of having an affair, said Monday the couple's divorce action filed by the governor is on hold pending "an attempt to resolve issues" in the case.

Cal Dunlap, Dawn Gibbons' lawyer, and Gary Silverman, the governor's attorney, also said Dawn Gibbons has agreed to move out of the Governor's Mansion and into a guest house on the mansion grounds in Carson City.

The governor, who has been staying at the couple's home in Reno, will move back into the mansion, the attorneys said in a 1-page statement.

Under the agreement, the lawyers said no more court documents will be filed in the divorce case, in Washoe County Family Court in Reno; and "there will be no further public comment from either side while the parties attempt to resolve issues related to the divorce action."

"The governor and the first lady will share the public areas of the mansion for their respective public duties with their respective staff coordinating the scheduling with each other," the statement adds.

The surprise development followed Dawn Gibbons' claim in late May that Gibbons, 63, was having an affair with a woman separated from her husband, a Reno doctor. Gibbons denied the allegation, saying it was just "a friendly relationship over all these years."

Dunlap said in a motion filed May 28 in Family Court on behalf of Dawn Gibbons, 54, that the governor wanted to end his marriage of nearly 22 years because of "his infatuation and involvement" with someone else.

The attorney's comments were included in a motion challenging a judge's decision to seal the divorce case. Dunlap said the law cited by the judge in sealing the files violates both the U.S. Constitution and the Nevada Constitution.

In filing May 2 for a divorce, Gibbons also asked for an order awarding him sole occupancy of the taxpayer-supported Governor's Mansion in Carson City. Dawn Gibbons then proposed that Gibbons could move back into the mansion and she'd stay in a guest house so she can continue her duties as first lady.

Dawn Gibbons also filed a demand in court for a detailed explanation from Gibbons on why he feels they're incompatible. In his divorce complaint, Gibbons listed incompatibility as grounds for ending the marriage.


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