Orange County is one of the safest and most prosperous places in the world, but that could all disappear in the blink of an election. The same anti-law enforcement, anti-public safety, pro-criminal movement that has destroyed once great cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco now has its sights set on our beautiful home. My opponent has already promised to end cash bail and reduce sentences for violent offenders, just like Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon. If we do not fight back, Orange County will start to look a lot more like Los Angeles sooner than later. That means spikes in crime, economic devastation, the release of violent offenders, rampant homelessness, and organized theft rings. As long as I am your District Attorney, that will never happen on my watch, which is why 34 other California District Attorneys support my campaign.
As District Attorney and throughout my entire career, I have placed public safety and the protection of our residents above all else. Public safety will always be my number one priority. I will never go easy on violent criminals or let Orange County be transformed into another Los Angeles. Unlike the District Attorneys in Los Angeles and San Francisco, I will never legalize theft and other crimes that destroy quality of life. I will always hold violent criminals who terrorize innocent victims accountable, instead of letting them off easy. Orange County is one of the greatest places in the world to live, work, and raise a family, and I will continue to fight to keep it that way.
The District Attorney should be an advocate for defenseless victims, not the criminals who put them in that position. My opponent and other woke prosecutors inexplicably believe that violent criminals are the real victims and treat them as such. For example, they have inexplicably taken the side of fentanyl dealers over victims, even as fentanyl deaths have increased by over 1500% in California. Unlike them, I have vigorously fought for victims’ rights throughout my career in public service, including joint-authoring Megan’s law, the landmark legislation requiring the release of public information related to sex offenders, chairing the campaign for Marsy’s Law, the nation’s most comprehensive Victim’s Bill of Rights, leading the campaign for Jessica’s Law, which increased civil and criminal penalties for sex offenders and child molesters, and leading the effort for prop 69, which requires the collection of DNA from all felons.
Combatting Hate Crimes
No one should be targeted because of what they look like, where they worship, or who they love. Since taking office, I have made going after the haters one of my top priorities. In response to a rise in hate crimes, we launched a dedicated Hate Crimes Unit at the Orange County District Attorney’s Office. Over the last two years, our office has prosecuted more than twice the number of hate crimes than were prosecuted by previous administrations in the past 25 years. When hate crimes do occur, we bring the full force of the law against the losers who perpetrate such evil acts. It is also worth noting that a hate crime charge is a sentence enhancement, which my opponent and other woke district attorneys fundamentally do not support.
Homelessness, Mental Health, and Addiction
For far too long, the criminal justice system has been a dumping ground to solve society’s mental health and substance abuse issues. We’ve used our jails and prisons to engage in mass incarceration because we didn’t have the systems in place to deal with people properly. As Orange County District Attorney and in previous elected positions, I have been working hard to end that terrible cycle, including championing the Be Well OC program, creating specific units within the DA’s office to address underlying mental health and addiction issues, humanely and compassionately clearing the Santa Ana riverbed, and establishing the first County homelessness shelter in my district at the time. We cannot incarcerate our way out of addiction, but we can treat our way out of addiction. That doesn’t happen by turning our backs on the very people who need help.
The Opioid Crisis and Fentanyl Deaths
The opioid crisis has ravaged our community and stolen countless young lives. We have seen a 1,000% increase in deaths by fentanyl over the last five years. Rich, poor, black, white, brown, men, women, children, hardcore drug users and first-time drug users who have been unknowingly exposed have died. These deaths are not overdoses; they are murders. Dealers are handing a loaded gun to unsuspecting victims, knowing that they will likely die, and they simply do not care. Fentanyl is cheap, it is easy to get, and it is killing people who had no idea they were taking it. I refuse to let these individuals get away with murder, which is why my office recently adopted a policy to charge drug dealers accordingly. Like with drunk drivers, drug dealers will now have to sign an advisement when they get caught that acknowledges they understand the likely result if they continue to sell or manufacture the deadly substance.
Accountability and Reform
As District Attorney, I have been fighting to keep Orange County residents safe from violent criminals, while at the same time pursuing common-sense reforms to ensure accountability, transparency, and equal application of the law within our criminal justice system. Positive criminal justice reform does not have to come at the expense of public safety. At the Orange County District Attorney’s Office, we have launched initiatives to fight racism and mass incarceration, banned choke holds, created specific units to review conviction integrity, reduce recidivism, and address underlying mental health issues, reformed jailhouse informant practices, and audited the evidence booking process, among other efforts. My opponent’s version of criminal justice reform mirrors that of Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon and simply means releasing violent criminals back onto our streets.
Protecting the Environment
Orange County is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, amazing weather, and wide-open recreational spaces. For all of us to continue enjoying the amazing environment we live in, it must be protected. As District Attorney, I will continue holding those who flout environmental regulations and destroy or pollute Orange County’s beautiful environment accountable to fullest extent of the law. What the Huntington Beach oil spill showed us is that we could very well be on the brink a of another major environmental disaster and not even know about it. That is why I requested the federal government require the immediate inspection of all oil pipelines off the coast. I also support a ban on the further expansion of offshore drilling. When the spill first occurred, I immediately demanded that the Coast Guard separate itself from Amplify Energy and not allow the company anywhere near the investigation, including not sharing an office with the company or allowing the company’s divers to go near the leak without strict supervision and oversight. We don’t let criminals conduct their own investigation into their crimes – why would we allow the owner of the oil pipeline to conduct its own investigation into the oil spill?