Support for LAist comes from
True LA stories, powered by you
Stay Connected

Share This

News

Why The LA District Attorney Said No To A Joint Corruption Task Force With The Sheriff

5e6fc7edb555c5000abe3d65-eight.jpg
A screenshot of Sheriff Alex Villanueva at a press conference on COVID-19 Monday, March 16, 2020. (L.A. County Sheriff's Department)
Our reporting is free for everyone, but it’s not free to make.
LAist only exists with reader support. If you're in a position to give, your donation powers our reporters and keeps us independent.

The draft memorandum of understanding arrived at DA George Gascón’s office last month. It proposed a joint task force to investigate public corruption, saying it would be a “force multiplier.”

The response from the DA’s office was, thanks, but no thanks.

“We do not want to compromise our ability to engage in that work in an independent manner,” Gascón spokesman Alex Bastian told us. He added that the DA’s Public Integrity Division, which investigates corruption, has “significant expertise.”

Villanueva did not respond to our request for comment on why he approached Gascón about a task force.

Support for LAist comes from

On Feb. 27, the sheriff publicly endorsed an effort to recall Gascón, citing the DA's efforts to reduce prison sentences to address mass incarceration.

Meanwhile, Villanueva’s department is conducting criminal investigations into three current or former Sheriff’s watchdogs. He brushes aside questions about potential ethical conflicts: “The sheriff is empaneled according to the state constitution with investigative powers to investigate all crimes within L.A. County,” he told us.

READ OUR FULL STORY ON THE SHERIFF’S PROPOSED CORRUPTION TASK FORCE:

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.