By Dayna Herroz
Twelve years ago, my daughter and her son were found strangled in their Southcrest apartment in San Diego. Thanks to the incredible dedication of the caring people in the District Attorney’s Office, my daughter’s killer was brought to justice and I eventually came out the other side as a champion for crime victims’ rights.
As a loss advocate and counselor, I now feel compelled to raise the alarm. A wealthy outsider is jeopardizing the DA’s role in keeping our neighborhoods safe.
Billionaire George Soros has dumped more than $1.5 million into a political action committee supporting DA candidate Genevieve Jones-Wright. Just like he has in other cities, Soros is funding a dangerous social experiment and San Diego voters shouldn’t fall for it.
Since 2014, Soros has spent more than $16 million in 17 county races in states other than California. His favored candidates won in 13.
Soros backs so-called “progressive” and “reform-minded” candidates who run on platforms of radical change. The Soros platform template is for reforming the bail system, dramatically reducing the number of people in jail and prison, decriminalizing drug offenses, and ending the anti-death penalty. Soros wants to shake up the criminal justice from the inside.
The truth is that things haven’t gone well for public safety in the jurisdictions where the Soros puppet has won.
In Philadelphia, 31 staffers at the DA’s Office were summarily fired days after the Soros candidate took office, including a number of veteran prosecutors, throwing the office into chaos. The Soros candidate is refusing to file the death penalty against a murderer who beat a 22-year old man to death with a baseball bat, drawing the ire of the victim’s family who feel unsafe. In his rush to “decarcerate,” the Soros-backed DA is dismissing the idea that most convicted killers should be sent to prison for life. He is also being accused of not being transparent with victims’ families—in defiance of state law. Last week, his office dismissed a brutal murder case, prompting the former prosecutor in the case to say the new DA “is absolutely being true to his word on the campaign trail that he was going to empty the jails. Even of guilty people.”
In Houston, a Soros-backed candidate won in 2016. She announced her presence by immediately dismissing 37 prosecutors (sound familiar?) and hired a chief of staff who was a progressive defense attorney hosting a public-access TV show. There has been criticism over a rash of cases where plea bargaining or light charging has resulted in violent crime on the streets. In one case, a man shot at police deputies, narrowly missing them, but received probation instead of going to jail. Violent crime is up there 8.9 percent.
In Orlando, Soros spent $1.3 million to back his winning candidate. The newly-elected State Attorney then announced she would not seek the death penalty in any case, including the murder of a police officer and a pregnant woman, prompting Florida’s governor to step in and strip of her of authority.
Here in San Diego, the candidate Soros has chosen to fund is woefully unqualified and will no doubt follow the Soros playbook of replacing dozens of dedicated prosecutors with criminal defense attorneys. Her backers are even working to register jail inmates to vote in the upcoming election.
Genevieve Jones-Wright has spent her entire career focused on defending criminals, not delivering justice for victims like me. She is already promising not to prosecute entire classes of crimes; has pledged never to seek the death penalty no matter what the circumstances; plans to reduce the number of criminals sent to jail; and promises not to seek lengthy terms for criminals solely because they’re under 25 years old.
I’ve seen this “reform” candidate speak and I’m shocked at her lack of commitment to protecting crime victims. If someone who’s never prosecuted a case in her life is elected as DA, as a violent loss peer advocate I could not in good conscience give a newly-bereaved family hope that we will find justice for their murdered loved one.
In San Diego, we have the lowest crime rate in 49 years. When it comes to murder, San Diego is THE safest large city in the United States. We already have programs that are bringing responsible, innovative reforms to the criminal justice system.
As an advocate for crime victims, and someone who suffers daily from the loss of my daughter and grandchild, it’s important to me that we have a qualified District Attorney who cares about victims’ rights and guards the innocent.
Dayna Herroz is a violent loss peer advocate and counselor.
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