District Attorney George Gascón and California Attorney General Rob Bonta are working in tandem as part of an apparent legal strategy that already has overturned the death penalty sentences of four Los Angeles County convicted killers, a high-ranking prosecutor said Tuesday.
On Nov. 5, Bonta filed notices of withdrawal in Los Angeles County Superior Court and deferred to the District Attorney’s Office habeas corpus petitions from the condemned inmates challenging their death sentences, records show.
In each instance, the District Attorney’s Office then told the court it conceded the inmates’ claims and asked the judge to vacate their death sentences. As a result, each inmate was resentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
The Attorney General’s Office has recently filed at least 20 other withdrawal notices leading Gascon critics to fear that more convicted killers will soon also have their death sentences vacated.