Gascon's Staff Accuses Him of Political Cronyism in Lawsuit
ADDA claims Gascon appoints ineligible political supporters from the Public Defender's office to key positions in the prosecutor's office, passing over accomplished career prosecutors
October 18, 2021
Los Angeles, October 14, 2021 - The Association of Deputy District Attorneys for Los Angeles County (ADDA) is seeking an injunction in Superior Court to prevent District Attorney George Gascon from continuing to violate the law by again appointing ineligible political supporters to civil service protected positions in the District Attorney's Office. This action is necessary to preserve the status quo while the Civil Service Commission hears the ADDA appeals of prior ineligible political appointments by the District Attorney.
The Los Angeles County Charter and civil service protections were designed to ensure good government by protecting independent institutions from political cronyism. However, these protections are not self-executing. The lawsuit seeks to stop the sitting district attorney, George Gascón from filling the civil service ranks with political loyalists and financial supporters.
The Los Angeles County Charter establishes a Civil Service System which requires employees to be selected and advanced for their ability, knowledge and skill, prohibits discrimination based on political affiliation, and protects employees against coercion for political purposes. In violation of the charter, the District Attorney hired unqualified political supporters from the Public Defender's Office and appointed them to Deputy District Attorney positions instead of selecting qualified career prosecutors on the active eligible lists for those positions.
The ADDA appeal of the ineligible political appointments is pending before the Civil Service Commission, which voted unanimously on July 21, 2021, to hear that appeal. Upon learning the District Attorney is planning to make additional appointments of ineligible political supporters, it is necessary for a Court to enjoin any such appointments until the Civil Service Commission hearings are completed
Prosecutors are obligated to ethically enforce the law and ensure public safety. To do so they must engage in decision making that is free from the threat of political retaliation or the promise of political reward. The ADDA is seeking court intervention because of the continued abuse of the current administration in violating important institutional safeguards designed to insulate the effective administration of justice from political influence.
About The ADDA
The Association of Deputy District Attorneys (ADDA) is the collective bargaining agent and represents over 800 Deputy District Attorneys who work for the County of Los Angeles.