WHEREAS San Diego County is the second largest in California and under San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore, 159 men and women have died while in custody additionally costing the taxpayer millions of dollars in wrongful death case settlements, staff time and legal costs associated with the Sheriff’s Department in court.
WHEREAS the Citizens Law Enforcement Review Board (CLERB) in one year experienced so many cases that the CLERB staff could not complete their work under legal timelines, and had to dismiss 22 cases without findings.
WHEREAS as many as 82% of the people who have died in custody were from BIPOC communities, raising additional concerns about racial disparities in San Diego’s criminal justice system and noting that 80% of the people who have died in county jails were awaiting trial and had not been convicted of a crime.
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the San Diego County Democratic Party requests that the San Diego Democratic delegation to the California State Legislature including Senate President Pro Tempore Toni Atkins representing the 39th Senate District, Senator Ben Hueso representing the 40th Senate District, Assemblymember Tasha Boerner-Horvath representing the 76th Assembly District, Assemblymember Brian Maienschein representing the 77th Assembly District, Assemblymember Chris Ward representing the 78th Assembly District, Assemblymember-elect Dr. Akilah Weber representing the 79th Assembly District, and Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez representing the 80th Assembly District to individually or collectively request that the Joint Legislative Audit Committee (JLAC) to start an investigation immediately to determine if the number of deaths in custody and related legal liabilities and settlements are disproportionately high in San Diego County, and if there is a pattern of racial discrimination in these deaths.
Adopted by the San Diego County Democratic Central Committee on April 20, 2021