Alameda County District Attorney’s Office Issues Statement Supporting Embattled Former Marin County Prosecutor

(Middle) Otis Bruce Jr., former Marin deputy district attorney
Via NARA & DVIDS Public Domain Archive – GetArchive
Public Domain

By The Vanguard Staff

OAKLAND, CA – The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office has issued a “statement of support of our esteemed Chief Assistant District Attorney, Otis Bruce,” a former Marin prosecutor accused of misconduct by at least eight deputy district attorneys.

Bruce, who joined the Alameda County DA’s Office in January, was Marin’s assistant district attorney, the second-ranked prosecutor in the office, at the time that the allegations were made. 

According to the Independent Journal, “Claims that were later sustained by an outside investigator included: manipulation and intimidation of deputy district attorneys; making sexist remarks; and making disparaging comments about deputy district attorneys, including some based on their race. 

The Independent Journal said it learned of the complaints filed against Bruce “shortly after publishing an article on the $12 million claim he filed against Marin County in January.”

The IJ wrote, “In his claim against the county, Bruce — the county’s first Black prosecutor and a onetime candidate for judge — asserted (Marin DA Lori Frugoli and others) retaliated against him after he challenged the firing of Cameron Jones, a Black prosecutor, in June 2022. Jones sued the county in November, alleging workplace discrimination and seeking $18 million in damages.”

Bruce is “an exemplary member of our Executive team who consistently demonstrates professionalism, integrity, and dedication in his role,” the statement from the Alameda County DA Office reads.

“The timing of this attempt to discredit Bruce is telling. In March, Bruce filed a 12-million-dollar claim against Marin County for retaliation after he advocated for racial justice in his office…Marin County attempted to impeach his character and publicly humiliate this dedicated public servant with the release of a report that is false,” the statement continued.

“I am quite familiar with the Oppenheimer firm that issued this report condemning Chief Bruce and people should not rush to judgment,” said Alameda DA Pamela Price, who represented Bruce in a 2007 legal action against Marin County for failure to receive a promotion, according to the IJ. 

“In an unrelated case, before I became DA, I represented two women attorneys who sued East Bay MUD for retaliation.  The Oppenheimer firm and their lead investigator claimed they found nothing wrong, but on June 22, a jury awarded the two women $8 million dollars for retaliation. East Bay MUD and The Oppenheimer Firm lost that case,” added Price.

The DA’s office added, “At the Alameda County DA’s office, we take allegations of misconduct seriously and are developing policies and procedures to ensure a safe and respectful work environment. We are committed to fostering a harassment-free and welcoming work environment that encourages open communication, supports employees, and values diversity, equity and inclusion.”

The office concluded, “Our hiring procedures are managed and administered by Chief Assistant District Attorney Royl Roberts who has done a remarkable job of hiring 80 employees in a short period of time. We stand firmly behind Chief Otis Bruce and will continue to support him.”

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