July 2022 Newsletter

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Newsletter  |  July 14, 2022

Semeon Tesfamariam Charged With Attacking Kimberly Glass With a Deadly Weapon


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District Attorney Gascón Announces
Joint-Action Plan Against Hate


District Attorney George Gascón was joined by Robin Toma, Executive Director of the Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations, and community members in announcing a series of community-based forums to inform a joint-action plan against hate in Los Angeles County.

“We must ensure the safety of all people, regardless of their race, ethnicity, religious beliefs, gender identity or sexual orientation,” District Attorney Gascón said. “To address the recent rise in hate crimes and incidents, my office will lead a series of community-based forums to create a thoughtful and inclusive plan of action to resist hate in Los Angeles County.”

Special Advisor Tiffiny Blacknell (pictured left), Asian American and Pacific Islander Advisory Board member Esther Lim and African American Advisory Board members Erica Robinson and Charity Chandler-Cole joined the District Attorney and Mr. Toma at the news conference.

Follow @LADAOffice on Twitter and Instagram  for information on upcoming community forums.

Click here to watch the June 29 news conference.

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Roe Overturned, D.A. Gascón and 82 Elected Prosecutors Commit to Not Prosecuting Abortions


In the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, District Attorney George Gascón joined with 82 other elected prosecutors from around the nation who pledged to use their well-established discretion and refuse to prosecute those who seek, assist in or provide abortions.

These elected prosecutors – collectively representing nearly 87 million people from 28 states and territories and the District of Columbia, including nearly 27 million from 11 states where abortion is now banned or likely to be banned – argued in a joint statement released June 24 that using limited criminal justice resources to prosecute personal health care decisions runs counter to their obligation to pursue justice and promote public safety.

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Less than 48 hours after District Attorney George Gascón dropped the office’s objection, an appellate court ordered the unsealing of transcripts of a conditional deposition of a former deputy district attorney in the Roman Polanski case.

District Attorney Gascón made the request in an effort to bring transparency to the case. The victim in the case supported unsealing the transcripts.

Click here to read about the July 13 court order.

Click here to read about the District Attorney’s court filing.

Man Found Guilty of Murdering Ermias Asghedom, Also Known as Nipsey Hussle


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Youth Justice Town Hall


At his For the Record Town Hall on Youth Justice, District Attorney George Gascón stressed the importance of accountability and rehabilitation, while emphasizing that it is also imperative that children not be treated the same as adults.

“It is important we recognize that young people think and operate very differently than adults do,” he said during the June 14 discussion. “We want to make sure that we deal with young people in a way where we hold them accountable, but that we're also trying to move them away from a place where they're going to become more criminalized."

To read the research behind the office’s youth justice policies, visit http://da.lacounty.gov/policies/research.

Click here to watch the Town Hall.

District Attorney Gascón Urges Watts Residents
To Embrace Opportunities, Education


District Attorney George Gascón met with the Watts community at the Jordan Downs housing development to discuss violence prevention efforts. He emphasized that education and training opportunities play a crucial role in reducing crime and building safe communities.

"There are opportunities that L.A. Community Colleges can offer you. You don't have to have a high school diploma,” he said. “We don't want to dwell on the past. We're trying to move forward. We're trying to come up with different opportunities.”

He was joined at the June 24 discussion by Los Angeles Community College District Chancellor Francisco C. Rodriguez and Wesley Crunk of the Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters.

Click here and here to watch highlights of the Town Hall.

District Attorney Gascón Announces Murder
Charges in Deaths of Two Women, Asks for
Other Potential Victims To Come Forward


District Attorney George Gascón announced that his office has charged two men in connection with the deaths of Hilda Marcela Cabrales-Arzola and Christy Giles whose bodies were left outside separate hospitals last November.

He asked that any other potential survivors step forward to report any information they may have related to the defendants. LADA's Bureau of Victim Services is available to assist and support victims.

He was joined by Assistant Head Deputy District Attorney Guillermo Santiso of the Sex Crimes Division (left), Director of the Bureau of Victim Services Tanishia G. Wright and Deputy District Attorney Catherine Mariano.

Victims may call the District Attorney’s Office at (877) 542-9370 or the Los Angeles Police Department’s West Homicide Bureau at (213) 382-9470 to report their assault.

Click here to watch the July 5 news conference.

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Discussion of Charging Decisions
Debunks Misinformation


In his For the Record Town Hall on Charging Decisions, District Attorney George Gascón spelled out how criminal case filing decisions are made while clarifying common misconceptions surrounding the process.

He also discussed his Alternative Charging Evaluation (ACE) Committee, a panel of experienced attorneys with diverse backgrounds, to review rare cases in which extraordinary circumstances and uniquely vulnerable victims warrant a deviation from the office’s sentencing enhancement policy.

Click here to watch the Town Hall.

LADA Shows Its Pride


As the rights of women and LGBTQ+ people continue to come under attack by the United States Supreme Court, District Attorney George Gascón and LADA celebrated and stood with the community from West Hollywood to South LA to show support for true lived equality for all.

This included the District Attorney’s support of Senate Bill 357, which repeals a discriminatory state provision known as the “walking while trans” law that has been used to target and profile Black, Brown and Trans women. LADA was proud to be one of two law enforcement agencies in the state to support the bill, which was signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom last month.

To watch video highlights from the Pride events, click here and here.


Justice Impact Award Presented
to District Attorney Gascón

For his focus on the intersection of the legal system and substance dependency, District Attorney Gascón received the Justice Impact Award from the L.A. Centers for Alcohol & Drug Abuse during the organization’s 50th anniversary event on June 16.

During the ceremony, District Attorney Gascón spoke about the need for criminal justice reform and a system that centers on a community-health approach.

Click here to watch highlights.

District Attorney Gascón Meets With
Morehouse College Students


District Attorney George Gascón met with prospective law students from Morehouse College to discuss reform of the criminal justice system and urge them to be part of that change.

"You often hear conversations about a disconnect between reforming the system and public safety, that somehow they're antagonistic to one another,” he told the students from the Atlanta-based historically Black college. “The implication is almost always that in order to be safe we need to lock up poor people, Black people, at high levels. I refuse to accept that paradigm."

Click here for video highlights of the visit.

LADA Delegation Provides
Child Abuse Training in Thailand


A delegation from LADA provided training at a child abuse summit in Thailand in May.

Deputy District Attorneys Richard Dooley (left) and Pak Kouch and District Attorney Investigator Chris Oppenborn met with Jatuporn Saenghiran, Deputy Director-General of the Thailand Office of the Attorney General (second from the left).  They also met with law enforcement officials, judges, social workers, health care personnel and other key groups involved in child abuse cases.

During the six-day visit, the delegation taught more than 110 attendees in Phuket and Bangkok about investigating and prosecuting physical child abuse. They discussed the use of expert witnesses and multidisciplinary teams and explained the inner workings of LADA’s Victim Impact Program and Complex Child Abuse Section.

Georgian Delegation Visits LADA


District Attorney George Gascón welcomed a delegation from the Republic of Georgia Prosecution Service Leadership, including Georgian Prosecutor General Irakli Shotadze. Arranged by the Department of Justice's Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance, and Training, the June 15 meeting focused on transparency, community outreach, victim services and crime prevention.

Honoring Vincent Chin's Life and
Standing Against Hate


District Attorney George Gascón stood in solidarity against hate at a ceremony commemorating the 40th anniversary of the racially motivated murder of Vincent Chin, a Chinese American living in Michigan.

Chin’s death sparked Asian American activism and the case reverberates today with renewed concern about anti-Asian hate and violence. District Attorney Gascón urged those gathered for the ceremony at the El Pueblo Historical Monument on June 23 to continue to stand together against hate.

Click here to watch District Attorney Gascón’s remarks.


Lunching With Clerks, Volunteers


District Attorney George Gascón held a series of brown bag lunches with LADA law clerks and other volunteers, during which he thanked them for their service.

He also took questions and discussed his goals for improving the legal system and services to crime victims. In the first meeting, he urged the students to “give time to yourself and the things that fulfill you as an individual and make time for your family,” as they pursue their careers.

If you are interested in volunteering at LADA, visit



Spectrum News 1:  After 24 years in prison, ‘Q Ball’ inmate earns freedom on Juneteenth


CBS2: Azusa neighborhood evacuated after authorities find large cache of illegal fireworks


NBC4: Man Charged With Attempted Murder in CHP Traffic Stop Shooting