Liberal Los Angeles DA Gascon compares sheriff to a pig

LA County Deputy District Attorney Jonathan Hatami hits back at George Gascon’s ‘pro-criminal, anti-victim’ policies.

Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon announced the launch of a new diversion program for juvenile criminals. 

The “Restorative Enhanced Diversion for Youth Pathway” aims to move young people from incarceration into rehabilitation, a move that Deputy DA Jonathan Hatami called “a slap on the wrist” for some felonies. 

Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon is facing a second recall attempt as criticism over his progressive policies intensifies. 
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

The qualifying felonies include burglary, assault without firearms or extensive injuries, vehicle theft, robbery, grand theft person, sexual battery and arson, FOX LA reported.

Other cities have tried similar programs. Chicago famously launched the “Criminal Trespass to Vehicle Workshops” pathway. 

Members of the LAPD make their way along Temple St. in  downtown Los Angeles.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

The Chicago Police Department held “station adjustments” that run three to four hours to try and fix the youth offender’s attitude toward stolen cars, CWB Chicago reported. 

The program applies only to car thefts. 

A security guard patrols the front entrance of Nordstrom after an organized group of thieves attempted a smash-and-grab robbery Nov. 23, 20201 in Los Angeles. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

New York City fielded the more robust “Close to Home” program starting in 2018. The program provided “therapeutic services” to youth offenders deemed “juvenile delinquents,” with the belief they will benefit from staying in their community while working through reform programs. 

The city defines juvenile delinquents as children between the ages of seven and 18 who committed an act that would qualify as a crime if committed by an adult. 

The LA program faces unique criticism in that Gascon’s deputy district attorneys continue to vocally oppose his programs and initiatives.

“Diversion means that we’re not charging anybody,” Hatami, a longtime critic of Gascon’s progressive policies, said of the new program. “So, if we’re not charging anybody, they don’t go through the court system. So you can’t give them any sort of programs that are monitored through the court.”

He speculated that the system might lead to abuse, with gangs pushing younger members who would qualify for the program to commit the crimes since they would face minimal punishment. 

Gascon has faced significant criticism as his zero-bail policies have effectively created a revolving door for some suspected criminals at a time when Los Angeles faces a severe crime wave. 

Police arrested 14 suspects allegedly involved in 11 smash-and-grab robberies in November, but the suspects returned to the street hours later because of zero-bail policies. They remain free while their cases go through the courts. 

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