Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon (D-Calif.) is facing a recall effort launched by victims’ rights advocacy groups less than 4 months after being elected, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The recall campaign effort was started on Saturday, when a “victims vigil” was held outside the city’s Hall of Justice, in memory of those who died from violent crime in the city. At the event of approximately 100 people, the group gathered the minimum requirement of 20 signatures in order to formally file a notice of intent that would allow the recall effort to begin in March.
Those behind the campaign are opposed to Gascon’s pledges, during his election campaign and since taking office, to drastically overhaul the city’s legal system, including ending sentence enhancing, eliminating the death penalty, and ending the practice of trying juvenile criminals as adults, among other changes. His campaign against incumbent District Attorney Jackie Lacey saw many law enforcement forces, including prosecutors’ unions, spend millions in their efforts to defeat him. As such, his election has resulted in many of his own staff and other Los Angeles law enforcement officials openly opposing his efforts.
Among those backing the Recall George Gascon campaign are former law enforcement officials, as well as current and former county prosecutors, including former District Attorney Steve Cooley. The campaign’s chairman is former Los Angeles City Councilman Dennis Zine, while former Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich is an “honorary chairman.”
The recall campaign’s website says that Gascon “instituted a series of directives to the prosecutors in his command that have nothing to do with a progressive approach to prosecution, and have everything to do with a radical agenda that ignores victims, disregards the law, and endangers the lives and livelihoods of all Angelenos.”
In order to formally start the actual recall election, the campaign will have 160 days to collect the minimum required amount of signatures from the county, which is 10 percent of the 5.8 million registered voters, or 580,000 total signatures.