HSG Client, the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice (CACJ), along with a coalition of national legal organizations, Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the UC Irvine School of Law, and John Van de Kamp, former California Attorney General and Los Angeles District Attorney, have called for a federal investigation of the Orange County District Attorney and Sheriff’s Department for alleged repeated violations of defendants’ rights involving jailhouse informants.
This year, CACJ sponsored AB 1328 in response to the Orange County controversy which made headlines. The measure, authored by Assemblymember Shirley Weber from San Diego, requires prosecutors who intentionally withhold evidence to be reported to the State Bar of California, and strengthens existing law to disqualify an individual prosecutor or an entire office from a case. The bill was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown.
In a letter sent to the U.S. Attorney General’s office on Tuesday, November 17, the authors declare that the criminal justice system in Orange County is “in a state of crisis.” The letter states that “it’s critical that a credible, neutral party conduct a thorough investigation of the actions of both the Sheriff’s Department and the OCDA. Otherwise, we will never know how many citizens’ constitutional rights were violated, and the public will not be able to have full confidence in our criminal justice system.”
Jeff Thoma, President of CACJ stated, “We cannot remain silent when our criminal justice system has been compromised.”
See full article on Legal Heavyweights Call for Federal Probe of Orange County DA, and the full letter to the U.S Attorney General as posted by the Voice of OC, here.