ACLU wins lawsuit against OC district attorney to release racial data

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Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer speaks during a hearing against former police officer Joseph James DeAngelo Jr. on crimes attributed to the Golden State Killer, at the Sacramento County courtroom, in Sacramento, California, U.S., June 29, 2020. Photo by Fred Greaves/REUTERS.

Last October, the ACLU and Chicanxs Unidxs de Orange County filed a lawsuit against District Attorney Todd Spitzer for refusing to release documents under the Racial Justice Act. 

Almost a year later, a superior court judge ruled last Thursday that DA Spitzer must disclose racial data of the cases he has prosecuted. The DA office has committed to sharing this information within 30 days.

Gustavo Arellano, a columnist at the LA Times, says that activists at the ACLU and Chicans Unidxs called Spitzer out for not keeping his campaign promises of transparency. “The big push for the activists who were doing this is like, ‘If you're going to be a DA, who's supposed to be with us, who does care about reforming the carceral system, then why aren't you playing ball with us? Why are you dragging your feet?’”