California crime spike fuels movement to recall progressive district attorneys

Since Price was elected in 2022, the Alameda County jail population fell to its lowest level in at least 20 years.

Published: November 20, 2023 11:00pm

Several California counties have recalled or are trying to recall their progressive district attorneys as community leaders say they are fed up with violent crime. 

In Alameda County, home to the cities of Oakland and Berkley, the group Save Alameda For Everybody, known as SAFE, has received over 70,000 signatures to recall Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price in what is the county's first-ever recall effort, CBS News reported Monday.

SAFE says it needs 73,195 valid signatures from county voters for the recall effort to get on the ballot. 

The effort comes after San Francisco voters successfully recalled now-former District Attorney Chesa Boudin last year in a 55% to 45% vote.

Earlier this summer, the Committee to Recall District Attorney George Gascon filed a lawsuit asking the court to certify its recall petition of the liberal Los Angeles district attorney.

The recall committee submitted over 715,000 signatures last year, but only 520,000 were found to be valid and election officials said that nearly 567,000 valid signatures were needed to qualify for the ballot, according to the Los Angeles Daily News

Gascon, Boudin and Price received millions of dollars in combined support for their election campaigns from Democratic millionaire George Soros, Just the News previously reported

In Los Angeles, property crimes increased 16% as of late October 2023, compared to the same time period in 2021, Gascon's first full year in office. Violent crime is down by 1.1% compared to the same time period, per Los Angeles Police Department data.

Though Price was just elected in 2022, the Alameda County jail population has fallen to its lowest level in at least 20 years, according to The San Francisco Chronicle. Her office has not released information on charging decisions, but violent crime is up 22% in Oakland this year as of mid-October, compared to the same time period in 2022, per the latest available police data

Brenda Grisham, whose son died as a result of gun violence in 2010, is a top official with SAFE.

"Here's the thing, I've been in Oakland my whole life, I grew up in the village, single parent," Grisham said, according to CBS. "We've always had crime, we're always going to have crime, but the crimes ... going on now is nothing near close to what we have experienced in the years." 

Follow Madeleine Hubbard on X or Instagram.

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