Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón announced today that he will restructure and centralize the specialized divisions that prosecute crimes involving intimate partner violence, sexual assaults, child abuse, hate crimes and elder abuse. The restructuring will enhance services to the most vulnerable in our community while also increasing the well-being of those deputies dedicated to pursuing justice for these victims.
“We need to organize our office to impose accountability on those who commit serious crimes, including those with influence and power, provide robust resources to victims of serious crime, and support initiatives that prevent crime before it happens,” District Attorney Gascón said. “Restructuring will help us to achieve those goals. It will also help us continue to promote a culture of transparency and equity that I have fought for since taking office.”
The biggest change is to the Family Violence and Sex Crimes Divisions, which will now be responsible for prosecuting cases countywide. Currently, each branch office has a group of attorneys that comprise the Victim Impact Program (VIP) team who handle cases involving elder abuse, child abuse, hate crimes, sex crimes, stalking and family violence.
The goal of the restructuring is to streamline the prosecution of some of the most serious cases involving vulnerable victims. This restructuring will increase its efficacy, coordination, equity and reach. This change follows an internal working group examination that revealed prosecutors assigned to the program were overworked and not receiving the support that they needed.
“This restructuring will allow our line prosecutors to refocus their attention on the victims of the most egregious crimes against persons, as VIP originally intended. And it will ensure that all these cases are handled with the high level of care and attention they require,” Gascón said.
This reorganization and centralization will be effective on March 17.