Press Releases

Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Oct 13, 2020

Alameda County District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley announces the creation of the Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DDEI). She has appointed Assistant District Attorney II Terry Wiley to the head the groundbreaking new division.

Under the leadership of DA O’Malley, the District Attorney’s Office convened the Fair and Equitable Policing and Prosecution Working Group in 2016. ADA Wiley has been a part of the Working Group from its inception, focusing on issues such as implicit bias, updating guidelines and protocols, and creating policies that ensure fairness and equity in prosecution, in working with victims of crime and within the Office.

These efforts have led to the creation of several programs and collaborative courts that offer alternatives to incarceration, providing individuals charged with crimes the opportunities to gain insight, to build skills, to complete their education and to move beyond the criminal justice system. We have also created a misdemeanor pre-charging program for people to participate in to avoid charges. As the State reports, Alameda County District Attorney’s Office has more collaborative courts per capita than any other county.

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DAs Announce Expansion of MOU in Nine Bay Area Counties to Respond in The Event of Mass Casualty Oct 1, 2020

On the third anniversary of the Route 91 Harvest Festival mass shooting in Las Vegas, the District Attorneys of the nine Bay Area Counties announce the signing and expansion of their Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to streamline a coordinated response in the event of a mass casualty crime incident.

The nine counties include Alameda, San Francisco, Sonoma, Contra Costa, Marin, San Mateo, San Joaquin, Solano, and Santa Cruz counties. The MOU allows any participating county impacted by a mass casualty crime incident to request shared resources and personnel from the surrounding counties. This is critical because a mass casualty event can quickly deplete county resources and victim or witness support staff, given the high number of people affected by suffering injuries, witnessing the incident, or experiencing the loss of a loved one. In such an event, the other counties would deploy staff and support to the affected county to ensure that there are sufficient victim and witness support providers available in the aftermath of a mass violence event.

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Governor Newsom Signs Important Legislation, Sponsored by DA O’Malley, to Fight Gun Violence Sep 30, 2020

New law sponsored by Alameda County DA will compel gun manufacturers to place a unique microstamp on firearms

Governor Newsom has signed legislation cosponsored by the Alameda County District Attorney and the Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence to compel the gun industry to comply with gun safety manufacturing regulations. The signing of this legislation means prosecutors will now have additional tools to track down perpetrators of gun crimes. The legislation was authored by Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco).

“This law will have a direct and lasting effect in the fight to end gun violence. California’s cities and neighborhoods are plagued by shootings and AB 2847 provides a smart and realistic tool to identify and prosecute gun crimes. The unique microstamp on each handgun will allow law enforcement and district attorneys to identify criminals and hold them accountable. It is imperative that we do all we can to stop the seemingly endless horror of gun violence in our state,” says DA O’Malley. “I thank Assemblymember Chiu for authoring this legislation, the Brady Campaign for cosponsoring, and the Governor for signing the bill.”

“The gun industry has gone to great lengths to avoid implementing microstamping and other life saving tools in California,” said Assemblymember Chiu. “We finally have a mechanism to hold the industry accountable and reduce gun fatalities. Thank you to Governor Newsom for signing this critical policy that will save lives.”

This legislation marks an improvement to the Unsafe Handgun Act (UHA), a law that passed in 1999 to update regulations and close loopholes in federal gun legislation. The UHA was updated in 2007 to require microstamping in two places on all guns manufactured in California. However, the gun industry has not manufactured any new guns in California since this change, and as such Californians have not benefitted from the safety measures implemented in 2007.

Microstamping involves the imprinting of a unique set of characters on the bullet casing when a gun is fired. This set of characters allows prosecution to trace bullet casings to the firearm and therefore the registered owner of the gun used in the crime. The rule changes implemented in 2007 mandated a microstamp in two locations, which gun manufacturers said would be too arduous to implement. This bill ensures that there is at least one microstamp on guns manufactured and sold in California.

Governor signs AB 1927,legislation sponsored by DA Nancy O’Malley Sep 29, 2020

Governor Newsom signed legislation cosponsored by the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office to provide immunity for victims and witnesses of sexual assault from criminal prosecution for the illegal use of alcohol or drugs occurring at the time of the alleged assault. This bill, co-sponsored with the San Diego District Attorney’s office and authored by Assemblymember Tasha Boerner Horvath (D-Encinitas), removes a barrier that might otherwise prevent or discourage victims of sexual assault from seeking justice.

“As District Attorney, I have made it my mission to empower survivors of sexual assault, and today the Governor has taken another step towards that goal,” said Alameda County District Attorney O’Malley. “We know that sexual assault cases are complicated and, in some instances, are intertwined with of drugs and/or alcohol. Survivors will now feel comfortable coming forward, knowing that they will not be charged with these low-level crimes. I want to thank Assemblymember Horvath for authoring and the Governor for signing this important legislation.”

AB 1927 follows in the footsteps of rules adopted by colleges nationwide to protect victims of sexual assault from separate disciplinary action related to drugs or alcohol at the time of the assault. This bill will prevent victims from undergoing the unnecessary trauma of testifying in order to be granted immunity, and hopefully encourage victims to come forward.
“The signing of AB 1927 sends a strong message to the thousands of victims of sexual assault who remained silent – we hear you, we understand your fears, and your stories are valid,” said Assemblymember Boerner Horvath. “For too long, our judicial system has placed unnecessary burdens on victims seeking justice.”

The bill enjoyed bipartisan support in both houses and did not receive any “no” votes throughout the legislative cycle.

DA O’Malley asks Governor to Veto Bill that Threatens Public Safety and Victims’ Rights Sep 16, 2020

California Assembly Bill 3234 is a threat to public safety and victim’s rights. It has been rushed through the legislative process without allowing for public comment or careful consideration.

This bill allows for diversion in most misdemeanor criminal prosecutions, even over the objection of the prosecutor and/or the victim in the case. This means that a judge could effectively halt the prosecution of misdemeanor crimes, including extremely serious offenses that pose danger to the community and to victims. This includes crimes that directly affect the safety and well-being of our communities: Driving Under the Influence (DUI)– Misdemeanor DUI w/ injury; Vehicular Manslaughter w/alcohol but without gross negligence; Crimes of Violence – Elder Abuse; Child Abuse; Assault by Means of Force Likely to Cause Great Bodily Injury; Misdemeanor Hate Crimes; Firearms Offenses – Carrying a Concealed Firearm; Carrying a Loaded Firearm in Public; Bringing a Deadly Weapon to a Courthouse, or State or Local Public Building; Possession of a Firearm in a School Zone and Dissuading a Witness or Crime Victim from reporting a crime or testifying and Criminal Threats.

“The District Attorney’s Office has long supported diversion and other alternatives to prosecution under appropriate circumstances. We continue to agree with the court and the defense in allowing diversion when it is reasonable given the facts of the case and in consideration of the rights of the victim,” states DA O’Malley. “This bill, however, goes too far in diverting very serious criminal conduct out of the justice system over the objection of the prosecutor and without the agreement of the victim.”

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$1.43 Million Settlement Announced to Address Illegal Dumping of Hazardous Waste Sep 14, 2020

Oakland, Ca - Alameda County District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley announced today that Alameda County Superior Court Judge Tara M. Desautels has ordered Kelly-Moore Paint Company (Kelly-Moore) to pay $1.43 million as part of a settlement of a civil enforcement prosecution. The judgment resolves allegations that the company violated state laws governing hazardous waste by routinely and illegally disposing of paint colorants, paint, electronic devices, aerosol products, and other hazardous wastes into company waste bins destined for municipal landfills not authorized to accept hazardous waste. The lawsuit also resolves allegations that Kelly-Moore failed to shred customer records containing confidential information before disposal.

“A top priority of my office is the protection of our environment,” states DA O’Malley. “By improperly disposing of hazardous wastes, Kelly-Moore violated California laws designed to safeguard the state’s natural resources. We will continue to investigate and prosecute instances of illegal disposal of hazardous waste in our ongoing effort to preserve and protect the soil, waterways and air that are vital to our health and well-being.”

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DA O’Malley Announces Filing of Voluntary Manslaughter Charges Against San Leandro Officer Sep 2, 2020

Oakland, CA- Alameda County District Attorney Nancy E. O’Malley has announced that her office has file a criminal complaint charging San Leandro Police Officer Jason Fletcher with Penal Code Section 192(a), Voluntary Manslaughter, a felony. The charges are based on the Officer’s use of force resulting in the death of Steven Taylor on April 18, 2020 in the San Leandro Walmart Store.

“The decision to file the criminal complaint was made after an intensive investigation and thorough analysis of the evidence and the current law,” states DA O’Malley. “The work of Police Officers is critical to the health, safety and well-being of our communities. Their job is one of the most demanding in our society, especially in these current challenging times. They are sworn to uphold and enforce the laws.

When there is use of force by a police officer that results in death, the District Attorney's Office conducts an independent and thorough investigation of the facts. We are mandated to apply those facts to California law. The decision must be made based solely on the facts and the current law. Justice demands this process to be done in an unbiased and legally sound manner.”

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Investigation Results in Civil Judgement & Contribution of Face Masks to Food Bank & Med. Services Aug 20, 2020

Continuing efforts to combat unlawful price gouging during the coronavirus pandemic, District Attorney Nancy O’Malley announced today that her office resolved a civil action against a local retailer known as Save-On Supplies, based in Dublin. On April 3, 2020, Governor Newsom issued an executive order that prohibits a business from selling consumer products that it did not sell before the pandemic emergency for more than 50% over its wholesale costs.

In this case, after receiving complaints about high prices, the District Attorney found that Save-On was charging more for face masks, including surgical masks and KN95 masks, than allowed by the Governor’s order. For example, consumers reported that Save-On was charging $120 for a pack of 20 KN95 masks and $125 for a pack of 50 disposable masks. The investigation revealed that the markup for these products was far in excess of the amount allowed under the order.

Without admitting liability, Save-On cooperated in the investigation, and changed its pricing to conform with the order and come into compliance with the law.

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Bill to Compel Gun Industry to Adopt New Safety Features Advances Jul 31, 2020

Legislation would strengthen Unsafe Handgun Act, making way for microstamping technology and new safety features

Sacramento, CA—On July 31 legislation sponsored by District Attorney Nancy O’Malley and authored by Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco) aiming to reduce gun fatalities by requiring the gun industry to produce handguns with greater safety features passed the Senate Public Safety Committee. Assembly Bill 2847 would strengthen the Unsafe Handgun Act (UHA) and open up the use of microstamping technology in order to solve firearm-related crimes. The bill is cosponsored by the Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence.

“This law will have a direct and lasting effect in the fight to end gun violence. California’s cities and neighborhoods are plagued by shootings and AB 2847 provides a smart and realistic tool to identify firearms and prosecute gun crimes. The unique microstamp on each handgun will allow law enforcement and district attorneys to identify criminals and hold them accountable. It is imperative that we do all we can to stop the seemingly endless horror of gun violence in our state,” says DA O’Malley. “I thank Assemblymember Chiu for authoring this legislation as well as our cosponsors, the Brady Campaign.”

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Charges Filed Against Alameda County Sherriff’s Office Technician and Santa Rita Jail Inmate Jul 29, 2020

The two are alleged to have worked together to bring cell phone and drugs into the jail

On July 29 the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office filed multiple felony counts against ACSO Technician Shannon Taylor and Leonard Jones, an inmate at Santa Rita Jail. The criminal complaint stems from an extensive investigation revealing that defendant Taylor, on multiple occasions illegally brought a cell phone and methamphetamine into the jail and furnished it to defendant Jones. It is alleged that the two were working together- she furnishing the methamphetamine for him to sell in the jail and sharing in the proceeds of the sales.

“Shannon Taylor’s actions not only violate the law, but also the trust the public places in those working withing the justice system,” says District Attorney O’Malley. “My Office will ensure that both defendants are held to account. They not only broke the law, but also put the health and safety of inmates and staff at the jail at risk. It is deeply troubling that an employee of the Sheriff’s Office engaged in this degree of criminal conduct, and I commend the excellent investigation that uncovered the crimes.”

Leonard Jones is in custody awaiting trial on murder charges and is expected to be arraigned on this new case on July 31, 2020. Shannon Taylor was arrested on June 17, 2020. She is out of custody and expected to be arraigned on August 14, 2020.

A copy of the criminal complaint as well as the declarations of probable cause are attached here.