Department 3 - Honorable Tammy Riggs


Judge Riggs was elected to the Second Judicial District Court, Department 3, in November 2020. She grew up here in Northern Nevada, attending Washoe County and Churchill County schools. After graduating from Boston University majoring in Geography/Environmental Studies, she worked as a consultant to private industry and the U.S. military regarding their compliance with environmental laws and regulations. She graduated with an M.S. in environmental toxicology from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Public Health prior to attending the University of Minnesota Law School, where she graduated cum laude in 2000.

After clerking for a year in the Second Judicial District Court for the Honorable Peter I. Breen, Judge Riggs served for seven years as a Deputy District Attorney in the Criminal Division of the Washoe County District Attorney's Office, where she prosecuted defendants for all crimes, including felony crimes committed against children and other vulnerable victims. There she received the Reno Police Chief's Commendation for successfully prosecuting repeat criminal offenders and child predators. After the 9/11 attacks on the United States, Judge Riggs served as the District Attorney's representative to the USDOJ's Anti-Terrorism Working Group for Northern Nevada.

Judge Riggs then entered private practice, where for nine years she represented adults and juveniles in criminal matters and appeals in Nevada state and federal courts. She also represented professionals (doctors, nurses, pharmacists, judges, etc.) in administrative disciplinary proceedings; parents in child dependency hearings; and defendants in federal and state civil forfeiture matters.

Judge Riggs was elected to the Reno Municipal Court (RMC) bench in 2016, where she conducted misdemeanor bench trials, pretrial evidentiary, traffic, and other criminal hearings, and trials for civil code enforcement appeals. At RMC she founded two specialty courts: the High Intensity Services and Supervision (HISS) Court, which provided transitional housing, substance abuse treatment, mental health services, and workforce training and placement to the most frequent offenders of quality-of-life crimes in the City of Reno; and Community Court, an outreach RMC court docket conducted in the Washoe County Downtown Library. The Community Court provides on-site access and referrals to service providers for homeless quality-of-life crime offenders, including benefit eligibility assessment, housing, job training and placement, GED preparation, substance abuse and mental health treatment, fiduciary services, and primary health care.

Judge Riggs is or has been a member of the Judicial Council of the State of Nevada as the Washoe Region Municipal Court Representative, the Nevada Pretrial Risk Assessment Study Committee for the Washoe Region, the Nevada Judges of Limited Jurisdiction, the Nevada Access to Justice Commission, the Second Judicial District Court Criminal Rules Committee, the Washoe County Bar Association, the State Bar of Nevada, the American Bar Association, and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. She has testified several times before the Nevada Legislature regarding proposed criminal legislation.

Judge Riggs enjoys travel and camping, hiking, and backpacking in the great outdoors with her family.