Gascon’s Ignorance on Allegations and Enhancements Leads to Injustice and Endangers Public Safety

Violent criminals hurt individuals and endanger the public. California law allows sentencing enhancements/allegations to be filed when the criminal also inflicts great bodily injury (Penal Code 12022.7), uses a deadly weapon (Penal Code 12022(b)(1)), uses a gun (Penal Code 12022.53), commits the crime for the benefit of a gang (Penal Code 186.22), or when they have prior felony convictions for crimes of violence (Penal Code 667(a)(1) and 1170.12).

Allegations show the gravamen of the offense. Filing an allegation affects the bail that is set and can also affect the sentence a defendant receives upon conviction. Although the law allows allegations and enhancements to be charged, Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon’s misguided policies do not. He believes the “statutory ranges” are sufficient to protect public safety. Many crimes have statutory ranges, which are often called a sentencing triad. Murder, however, does not have “statutory ranges.” Experienced prosecutors know this. Gascon, having never actually prosecuted a case, apparently did not.

Gascon’s ill-advised policies have been wreaking havoc on public safety. He has abandoned murder victims’ families. His blind devotion to “reform” the criminal justice system has been an abject failure because nothing is actually better since he took office. The families of 9-year-old Trinity and 53-year-old Fatima Johnson know firsthand the devastation that Gascon’s policies have created.

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