L.A. Times: Gang Member Who Gascon Refused to Prosecute Now Accused of New Murder - Gascon Must Go
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L.A. Times: Gang Member Who Gascon Refused to Prosecute Now Accused of New Murder

Nathan Hochman Releases Statement on ‘Deadly Consequences’ of Gascon’s Policies on Gang and Gun Violence

LOS ANGELES / June 21, 2024 – Nathan Hochman, candidate for District Attorney of Los Angeles County, today released a statement about George Gascon’s mishandling of murderer Denmonne Lee, who committed a new murder after Gascon refused to prosecute him in criminal court for a 2018 killing. The case was highlighted today in an explosive new L.A. Times story.

Gascon failed to protect the public from Lee even despite evidence that he had sent a death threat while in custody to an ex-girlfriend who had allegedly reported him to law enforcement.

“George Gascon’s inexcusable refusal to prosecute Denmonne Lee in criminal court for the first murder was a miscarriage of justice and now a second victim is dead as a result. Lee should have been in prison instead of on the streets of L.A. when he committed the new murder. This is yet another tragic example of the deadly consequences of Gascon’s failed social experiment he’s imposed on the people of Los Angeles County.”

Gascon’s failure to prosecute Lee in criminal court was highlighted today in an L.A. Times story with the headline: “A second chance, a second killing — and a political nightmare for L.A.’s D.A.”

This is not simply a political story, it’s a tragic example of the real-life consequences that Gascon’s failed policies have on the people of Los Angeles County that he has failed to protect, Hochman said.

At the time of his 2018 arrest, Lee was 16 years old and a known gang member. While in juvenile custody awaiting prosecution, Lee used a smuggled mobile phone to send a death threat to his ex-girlfriend, who had allegedly reported him to law enforcement.

Given these facts, the D.A. at the time, Jackie Lacey, sought to transfer Lee’s case from juvenile court to criminal court, where Lee could have faced decades in prison. After Gascon was elected in 2020, he reversed Lacey’s decision, enabling Lee to ultimately be released from custody and commit a new murder in 2024, the Times reported.

Michelle Brace, the widow of Lee’s 2018 victim John Ruh, told The Times that she was frustrated by Gascon’s refusal to prosecute Lee and is now planning to move out of California.

“He didn’t know what he was doing with his directives and the lives they’d shatter,” Brace told The Times. “I won’t move until George Gascon is out of office.”

About Nathan Hochman:

Nathan Hochman, a former federal prosecutor, Assistant U.S. Attorney General, President of the Los Angeles City Ethics Commission and defense attorney, is running to defeat George Gascon and become the next District Attorney of Los Angeles County. He is an Independent (No Party Preference) candidate who believes politics has no place in the D.A.’s Office. He has bipartisan support and is endorsed by the Association of Deputy District Attorneys, former L.A. County District Attorneys Jackie Lacey and Steve Cooley, the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs’ Association and more than 50 elected city leaders. For more information about Hochman and his campaign, please visit www.NathanHochman.com


Media Contacts:
Stuart Pfeifer
(310) 415-6955

Jean Guccione
(818) 599-5838

See also: Victim Stories: John Ruh