Los Angeles County May Have a New District Attorney

George Gascón (left) and Jackie Lacey (right). | Courtesy photos

By Terry Miller

In one of the most heated races in this election year, District Attorney Jackie Lacey may be ousted by challenger George Gascón.

Gascón had 54 percent of the vote as of Wednesday morning and Lacey, the incumbent, trailed at 46 percent.

Lacey runs an office of nearly 1,000 deputy district attorneys responsible for the county, which includes dozens of police departments. Lacey has received significant criticism for her support of the death penalty and especially her handling of police officer and sheriff’s shootings.

Earlier this year, as massive protests exploded in many cities across the country following the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police and cries for police reform and defunding the police grew louder, calls for Lacey’s ouster gained traction.

Governor Gavin Newsom appointed Gascón to be San Francisco’s police chief in 2009 and district attorney in 2011, where he served until recently. Gascón’s time as a police officer was under scrutiny during the race. Former L.A.P.D. Chief Bernard Parks, who supported Lacey, told the Los Angeles Times that “he believes Gascón was lenient when he sat on disciplinary boards and dismissed his progressive stances as ‘inauthentic’ and mostly designed to benefit his political aspirations.”

November 4, 2020

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