By Hannah Skepner
LOS ANGELES – The governor of California, Gavin Newsom, Tuesday endorsed longtime friend George Gascón to be the next District Attorney of Los Angeles.
In his statement, Newsom noted, “In 2009 I first turned to George Gascón to lead the San Francisco Police Department because of his track record of getting results. Sixteen months later police were actively engaging the community and homicides had plummeted by more than 50 percent. That’s why, in my last act as a Mayor, I turned to him once more to succeed then-DA Kamala Harris.
“Over the next nine years he famously reduced crime while reducing incarceration, and he burnished a national reputation as a leader in the fight to reform our dated system of justice. This November Angelenos will choose who to turn to as calls to reimagine our dated system of justice grow louder, and I urge them to join me once again in turning to George Gascón,” he added.
Gascón is the Democratic Party’s nominee for the position, and is endorsed by many big party names, including U.S. Senators Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Black Lives Matter co- founder Patrisse Cullors and former Chief of the LAPD Charlie Beck.
Gascón was born in Havana Cuba, and, at the age of 13, immigrated to Los Angeles. After becoming a sergeant in the military and earning a Bachelor of Arts in history from California State Long Beach, Gascón joined the LAPD, where he served as an officer for 30 years.
In 2006, he was appointed as Chief of Police for the Mesa Police Department, where he had frequent problems with a county sheriff over the sheriff’s targeting of Latinos in the area.
In 2009, he was appointed by then-Mayor of San Francisco Newson, as the San Francisco Chief of Police, and, two years following, the San Francisco District Attorney in 2011 when Newsom looked to Gascón once again when Harris was elected Attorney General, leaving her post as DA.
During his time in this position, Gascón put reforms into place that are still being duplicated throughout the country, helping to drop violent crime and homicide rates.
After his two terms as DA in San Francisco, Gascón returned to LA to help care for his mother, and to be closer to his daughters and grandchildren.
In response to Newsom’s endorsement, Gascón noted how the governor is a good representation of what a leader should be citing, examples such as Newson’s response to the pandemic, and how he was willing to make tough decisions backed by data and science.
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