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LA County district attorney moves to wipe 66,000 marijuana convictions

Alene Tchekmedyian, Los Angeles Times on

Published in News & Features

The DA's office is holding off on automatically clearing 2,142 marijuana convictions it says are ineligible for relief because of the person's criminal history. Those individuals can still petition to be resentenced, the district attorney's office said.

Lacey's announcement came hours before her challengers in the March 3 race for district attorney were scheduled to face off in a debate. She dropped out of the event last week, saying one of the sponsors was linked to the biggest donor to the super PAC of George Gascon, the former San Francisco district attorney who is running against her.

Lacey, who is in her eighth year as the county's top prosecutor, also pointed to hecklers who yelled and chanted as she spoke during the debate she did attend last month, when she squared off against Gascon and a second challenger, Rachel Rossi, a former public defender.

"That's not a fair debate," Lacey said. "I'm prevented from expressing my points or hampered by expressing my points because people are screaming and shouting."

Gascon was the first district attorney in California to announce a partnership with Code for America to clear marijuana convictions in San Francisco. His office wiped 9,362 marijuana convictions. Of those who received relief, 33% are black and 27% are Latino.


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