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Judge Temporarily Blocks Herb Wesson's City Council Return

Herb Wesson stands with a microphone in his hand. He is an African American man wearing a tan suit jacket, light colored shirt and a striped tie. He is also wearing glasses.
Herb Wesson was unanimously chosen by City Council to fill the vacant 10th District seat, but a judge has temporarily blocked the former councilmember's appointment.
(Ken James
Getty Images)
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After the Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday to appoint former member Herb Wesson to fill the vacant 10th District seat, a judge has temporarily blocked the former councilman's appointment to the council.

The order will stop Wesson from filling the seat until a preliminary injunction hearing on March 17.

The Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Southern California and others filed a lawsuit late last week seeking to get Mark Ridley-Thomas reinstated and block Wesson's appointment.

Ridley-Thomas, who was suspended after being indicted on federal corruption charges, has denied any wrongdoing.

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On Tuesday, LAist spoke with USC Professor Frank Zerunyan, who said the pending litigation could affect Wesson's appointment.

"To be honest, it's not going to change anything, rushing this through," Zerunyan said. "Because a court, as I said, can fashion an order that will dismantle all this anyway."

The complaint alleges "the decision to suspend Ridley-Thomas contravenes the bedrock presumption of innocence guaranteed under California law."

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