Summer Stephan at Golden Hall
District Attorney Summer Stephan at Golden Hall on June 4. Photo by Chris Stone

Interim District Attorney Summer Stephan held a commanding lead Tuesday night against challenger Deputy Public Defender Genevieve Jones-Wright.

With 100 percent of precincts reporting — but thousands of mail ballots still outstanding — Stephan had 63.7 percent of the vote versus Jones-Wright’s 36.1 percent. Jones-Wright has had the backing of billionaire investor and criminal justice reform advocate George Soros’s political action committee, California Justice & Public Safety.

The committee has spent $1.5 million in support of Jones-Wright since May 4, according to San Diego County campaign finance reports.



The San Diego County Board of Supervisors appointed Stephan district attorney in June after Bonnie Dumanis, who is now running for a supervisor seat, stepped down from the post.

District Attorney Summer Stephan poses for selfie with her nephew Trent Fallon, 13, of Carmel Valley Middle School. Photo by Ken Stone

Stephan touted her 28 years of experience in the District Attorney’s Office, and her advocacy for sexual assault victims.

In April, the D.A.’s office devoted an additional $1 million toward rape kit testing, though the money isn’t expected to cover a several-thousand-kit backlog.

Jones-Wright, who advocates for testing all kits, countered that Stephan hasn’t done nearly enough to address sexual assault.

Jones-Wright advocates for reducing incarceration for low-level, nonviolent crimes, addressing racial disparities in sentencing, advocating for those who are unjustly targeting by police, and not seeking the death penalty.

Stephan has accused Jones-Wright of prioritizing criminals over victims. Her campaign created a website, ThreatToSanDiego.com, that features a photo of Soros superimposed over an image of protesters aligned with Antifa, a conglomeration of autonomous, self-styled anti-fascist militant groups in the United States. Numerous conspiracy theories allege, without evidence, that Soros backs the Antifa movement.

— City News Service contributed to this report