DA George Gascón Issues Special Directives

DECEMBER 7, 2020

After his swearing in today, District Attorney George Gascón issued a number of new directives, drastically changing the landscape of criminal law in Los Angeles County. While the directives are directed at the District Attorney’s office, a number of them may be directly relevant to current cases on appeal or that have been recently remanded. These include:

Sentencing Enhancement/Allegations, directing DDAs to seek to dismiss all enhancements at any sentencing and AND WITHIN 120 DAYS of sentencing, and directing no new filings of enhancements, including strikes, 5-year priors, gang enhancements, etc.

Resentencing, directing DDAs to apply the new policy re enhancements (none) on habeas cases, cases remanded to the Superior Court by the Court of Appeal or Supreme Court, and resentencing petitions under section 1170(d)(1) (CDCR or DA initiated). The Resentencing directive also contains a detailed section on positions the office will adopt at all 1170.95 resentencing proceedings.

Youth Justice, directing DDAs not to seek to transfer any children ages 17 or under at any point at which that argument may be made, directing DDAs not to file delinquency cases when the incident results in a dependency petition.

The DA’s office will also no longer seek the death penalty, will be setting up a Conviction Review Unit, and sentence review unit. For details on all of the new directives, see here.

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