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Gascon, Hochman will square off in November


Race for LA County District Attorney

District Attorney George Gascón will be heading to a November runoff election in his bid to retain his position, likely squaring off against Nathan Hochman, a former U.S. assistant attorney general who was the Republican candidate for state attorney general in the 2022 general election.

With neither candidate earning more than 50% of the vote from Tuesday’s primary election, the top two vote-getters advance to the November general election.

Gascón topped the field of 11 challengers with 21% as votes were tabulated Wednesday. Hochman was running a close second at 17% and Jonathan Hatami, a child abuse prosecutor in the District Attorney’s Office, in a fading third place with 13%.

Gascón was elected in 2020 over incumbent Jackie Lacey as he promised a wave of progressive changes. But he has been under fire since taking office by issuing a series of directives critics have blasted as being soft on crime. The directives included a rule against seeking the death penalty, a ban on transferring juvenile defendants to adult court and prohibitions on filing sentencing-enhancements in most cases.

“This campaign is not about me, this is a community movement,” Gascón said last November, when he kicked off his reelection campaign. “This is about looking at the criminal justice system of the 21st Century not with a rear-view mirror but looking forward.”

Also running for his job were three other members of Gascón’s office: John McKinney, supervising district attorney; Maria Ramirez, the head deputy D.A.; and Eric Siddall, a violent crimes prosecutor.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judges Debra Archuleta and Craig J. Mitchell were also on the ballot, along with David S. Milton, who retired as a Superior Court judge in 2014.

The other candidates were Jeff Chemerinsky, an assistant U.S. attorney; criminal defense attorney Dan Kapelovitz, and Lloyd “Bobcat” Masson, a cold-case prosecutor in San Bernardino County.