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December 10, 2019

Police Shootings, Death Penalty, Homelessness, and Other Issues to be Debated

LOS ANGELES — The current race for district attorney in Los Angeles County involves issues so vital nationwide that the New York Times called it "the most important district attorney’s race in America." The Los Angeles Times said that except for the presidential race, it's the "most important item before voters in 2020."

In the first district attorney debate for the election, three candidates challenging incumbent Jackie Lacey — who declined to take part in the debate — will take questions from community members impacted by D.A. decisions. Audience members will also have the opportunity to ask questions of the candidates.

The event is sponsored by the LA Coalition for DA Justice & Accountability, including the ACLU SoCal, Black Lives Matter-L.A., Loyola Law School's Project for the Innocent, UCLA Law Criminal Justice Program, several others.

WHAT: District attorney candidate debate for the 2020 election. It’s free and open to the public.

WHO: Candidates appearing at the debate:

  • Richard Ceballos — Currently a Los Angeles deputy district attorney in the organized crime and hate crimes unit, Ceballos has been with the D.A.’s office in L.A. for nearly 30 years. He has also been a professor of law at both USC and UC Irvine.
  • George Gascón — Formerly the San Francisco district attorney, Gascón’s law enforcement career included stints as an assistant chief of the Los Angeles Police Department, and as chief of the San Francisco and Mesa, Arizona police departments.
  • Rachel Rossi — Formerly counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, Rossi had also been criminal justice counsel to Senator Richard Durbin. Previous to those positions, she was a public defender in federal and state courts.

Jody Armour, a law professor at USC, will moderate the debate.

WHEN: Wednesday, December 11, 6-9:30 p.m.

WHERE: California African American Museum, 600 State Dr., Los Angeles.

The debate will be followed by a reception with complimentary wine and music from DJ Kita. Audience members will receive an original poster by Ashley Lukashevsky.