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Today in
S.C.V. History
September 25
1970 - Lagasse family helps save Mentryville buildings as Newhall and Malibu brush fires erupt & join into worst fire in SoCal history. Twelve fires over 10 days burn 525,000 acres, kill 13 people and destroy approx. 1,500 structures. [story]


The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors invites you to join us in celebrating Public Defense Day today to honor the 55th anniversary of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision Gideon v. Wainwright.

This decision declared that defendants in criminal cases have the right to counsel, regardless of their ability to pay.

It is, therefore, both appropriate and necessary to recognize the approximately 1,400 Los Angeles County staff, including more than 900 lawyers, who work tirelessly in Los Angeles County’s Public Defender and Alternate Public Defender offices.

These individuals are dedicated to defending the liberty interests of their clients as well as advocating for access to the other public services and resources they need to be productive and healthy members of the community.

Los Angeles County has a long history of demonstrated leadership working towards the just and humane treatment of all its residents, regardless of economic status. This has most recently been demonstrated through the Homeless Initiative, Whole Person Care and the offices of Diversion and Re-entry and Immigrant Affairs.

In 1913, Los Angeles County established the nation’s first Public Defender position, striking out alone and early in assuring free counsel to those without the ability to pay.

This idea was pushed a good 70 years before the Gideon decision by Clara Shortridge Foltz, the first woman lawyer in California, speaking at the Chicago World’s Fair. This action became a model for many other jurisdictions throughout California and across the country. If a jurisdiction of the size, diversity and complexity of Los Angeles County could meet this challenge, surely so could other jurisdictions.

Public defenders are charged with mounting the most rigorous and relentless defense of an indigent client’s rights under the law. No two offices in the nation serve their clients more passionately and aggressively than this County’s Public Defender and Alternate Public Defender.

Janice Fukai has served as Alternate Public Defender since 2002 and was the first Asian American woman to serve as a department head in the county of Los Angeles. Working with her highly dedicated staff, she has established a collaborative and congenial environment which allows her talented staff to provide consistently outstanding service to each of their clients.

The Board of Supervisors is currently undergoing an extensive search for the next Public Defender of Los Angeles County. The Board recognizes the awesome responsibility of the Public Defender, and is diligently seeking an individual with deep dedication to individualized justice for diverse populations and the ability to inspire and lead the hardworking and dedicated staff of the Office of the Public Defender.

During this interim period, the Office is being ably led by Nicole Davis Tinkham, who is serving in this temporary role with grace and dedication—both to the people she is leading and to the clients they serve.

This Board believes that the Public Defender is also responsible for playing a leadership role in policy issues of a more general nature — bail reform, juvenile justice, Proposition 47 initiatives including sentence reduction, to name a few — and for advising the Board as it determines which of these issues to address and what potential actions to consider.

The Public Defender and their staff have a body of experience and expertise, as well as a singular perspective, which the Board respects and takes into account as it shapes and reshapes County policy. This opportunity to both champion the cause of indigent defendants and influence the policies and practices of America’s largest local jurisdiction creates a unique opportunity for the next Public Defender to assume a premier national leadership position.

People join the Los Angeles County Offices of Public Defender and Alternate Public Defender because they truly believe in a defendant’s right to a complete and robust defense. The Constitution, Bill of Rights and favorable case law serve as a public defender’s arsenal.

To celebrate this day and this critical work, we offer a quote from Justice Black in the Gideon decision: “[R]eason and reflection require us to recognize that, in our adversary system of criminal justice, any person haled into court, who is too poor to hire a lawyer, cannot be assured a fair trial unless counsel is provided for him. This seems to us to be an obvious truth.”

Happy Public Defense Day!.

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1 Comment

  1. Juslikethat says:

    Does this mean the Bd saw the lunacy of putting County Counsel in just about every department b/c they umm, are civil government lawyers, know some laws, & can maybe get rid of employees? Serve as the Bd’s moles? Act to terminate employees now while banking on the County’s stamina against a jobless employee’s lawsuit later?
    The audacity that they’d even consider appointing a civil lawyer who DEFENDED the sheriffs against police brutality lawsuits & this very PD’s Ofc she was tasked with leading. Zero criminal experience. Zero experience smashing your hand against the desk to prevent it from shaking during a death verdict. Zero experience walking into lockup, having to interview & gain the trust of 10 or so clients who were arrested over the weekend & believe you’re sleeping w/ the DA – literally. Zero experience having feces rubbed on your chest by a mentally ill client in open court. Zero experience watching your client shot & killed in court during sentencing only to announce ready for the next trial. Zero experience holding a mom’s hand knowing she will likely never hug her son again. Zero experience with a judge who excluded all prior convictions of a prosecution witness yet admitted all prior convictions of your client at trial. Zero experience telling a client NOT to discuss our trial strategy in a hearing to fire you because you’re still absolutely protecting him even though he’s trying to fire you. … Who’s novel idea was this to put this ZERO EXPERIENCE as head of the largest U.S. defense firm representing the indigent, of-color, criminally accused? WT-Serious-F?

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LOS ANGELES COUNTY HEADLINES
Monday, Sep 24, 2018
Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell announced the official launch of the LASD “Surviving an Active Shooter” brochure which is being made available to the 70 school districts composed of 1.7 million students in the county.
Monday, Sep 24, 2018
Separate hearings in Los Angeles Superior Court and before the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday will address a lawsuit and an appeal against the Newhall Ranch and NorthLake mixed-use developments, respectively, in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Friday, Sep 21, 2018
The Los Angeles County Fire Department has launched an updated "Ready! Set! Go!" program to assist residents living in wildfire-prone areas.
Friday, Sep 21, 2018
A roundtable discussion about a proposed Los Angeles County fee-based business registration program is set for the Stevenson Ranch Library on Tuesday, Sept. 25 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Friday, Sep 21, 2018
The next meeting of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is set for Tuesday, Sept. 25, starting at 9:30 a.m.

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Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1970 - Lagasse family helps save Mentryville buildings as Newhall and Malibu brush fires erupt & join into worst fire in SoCal history. Twelve fires over 10 days burn 525,000 acres, kill 13 people and destroy approx. 1,500 structures. [story]
Three individuals and one writing team have been selected as winners of the 2018 Academy Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition.
Academy Reveals 2018’s Winning Nicholl Screenwriters
The Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation will present an art show, a pow-wow, a series of country music concerts and a pet adoption fair at William S. Hart Regional Park in September and October.
Art Shows, Pow-Wow, Country Concerts, Pet Fair Coming to Hart Park
East meets West in legendary playwright Stan Lai’s new original work, "Nightwalk in the Chinese Garden," co-produced by CalArts' Center for New Performance and The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens in San Marino.
CalArts Center for New Performance Stages New Stan Lai Play at Huntington
The College of the Canyons theatre department will open its season with a production of 'Our House,' running Oct. 5-14 at the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center's Black Box Theatre.
Oct. 5-14: COC Theatre to Present ‘Our House’ at Black Box
The Master's University women's volleyball team continued its best start to a season since 2012 on Saturday night in El Cajon, sweeping San Diego Christian.
Mustangs Volleyball Team Wins Another Conference Sweep
The TMU Mustangs women's volleyball team went on the road to face Life Pacific College on Friday in San Dimas and won 3-1 by scores of 20-25, 25-18, 27-25 and 25-17.
TMU Women’s Volleyball Wins on the Road at Life Pacific
The Charlie Fire near Castaic remains at 3,380 acres burned but is 30 percent contained, according to an update from the fire's Incident Commander just before 7 a.m. Monday.
Firefighters Hold Charlie Fire to 3,380 Acres; 30 Percent Contained
The Saugus High School music program's new salsa band will stage its first fundraiser at Dario's restaurant in Canyon Country on Tuesday, Sept. 25 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Sept. 25: Fundraiser for Saugus Salsa Band at Dario’s
Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell announced the official launch of the LASD “Surviving an Active Shooter” brochure which is being made available to the 70 school districts composed of 1.7 million students in the county.
Sheriff Unveils Active Shooter Brochure for County Schools
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Monday published its list of upcoming submission deadlines for 91st Academy Awards consideration.
Oct. 1, Nov. 15: Submission Deadlines for 2018 Oscars
Top California policymakers testified Monday in strong opposition to the Trump Administration’s proposed rule rolling back existing cleaner cars standards.
California Officials Blast Feds’ Proposed Cleaner Car Standards Rollback
Separate hearings in Los Angeles Superior Court and before the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday will address a lawsuit and an appeal against the Newhall Ranch and NorthLake mixed-use developments, respectively, in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Sept. 25: County Hearings on Newhall Ranch, NorthLake Developments
The renowned Chinese Warriors of Peking troupe will bring its astounding martial arts and acrobatics performances to the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center at College of the Canyons on Saturday, Oct. 6 starting at 4 p.m.
Oct. 6: Chinese Warriors of Peking Bring Martial Arts, Acrobatics to PAC
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station has released its public safety and crime information report for Newhall (Zone 6) for the week of Sept. 10-16.
Crime Blotter: Grand Theft, Domestic Violence in Newhall
On the heels of the Global Climate Action Summit, California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Monday called for accelerated climate action at all levels and sectors of society in remarks at the opening of Climate Week NYC.
Brown Opens Climate Week NYC with Heads of State, UN Officials
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station has released its public safety and crime information report for Valencia (Zone 5) for the week of Sept. 10-16.
Crime Blotter: GTA, Assault with Deadly Weapon in Valencia
While still a sellers’ market, the inventory of homes and condos listed for sale in the Santa Clarita Valley increased for the third consecutive month in August, rising to its highest level since September 2014.
SCV Home, Condo Resale Prices Near Record Highs in August
California gets mixed reviews from the personal-finance website WalletHub in its report on 2018’s "Best and Worst States for Teachers."
California Gets Mixed Reviews in WalletHub Teachers Study
1855 - Sanford & Cyrus Lyon establish Lyon's Station (for stagecoaches) near today's Sierra Hwy & Newhall Ave [story]
1948 - Agua Dulce Women's Club organized [timeline]
Los Angeles County firefighters, along with Angeles National Forest Service, are battling the "Charlie Fire" in Castaic.
Charlie Fire in Castaic Grows to 3,380 acres, 10% Contained Sunday
1969 - College of the Canyons opens with first class of students in temporary quarters at Hart High School [story]
The contemporary art journal X-TRA and the Broad Museum in Downtown Los Angeles will present "The Un-Private Collection Workshop: Edgar Arceneaux" by the CalArts grad on Saturday, Sept. 22 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Sept. 22: Edgar Arceneaux Holds Financial Workshop at The Broad
The Master's University men's basketball team, which finished 29-3 last season, has released its 2018-19 schedule.
TMU Men’s Basketball Team Releases 2018-19 Schedule
The Los Angeles County Fire Department has launched an updated "Ready! Set! Go!" program to assist residents living in wildfire-prone areas.
Get Your Personal Ready! Set! Go! Wildfire Action Plan
The William S. Hart Union School District Board of Governors will recognize the district's 2018-2019 Teachers of the Year at the board's next regular meeting Wednesday night, Sept. 26.
Sept. 26: Hart Board to Honor District Teachers of the Year
The next regular meeting of the Governing Board of the William S. Hart Union High School District is set for Wednesday, Sept. 26.
Sept. 26: Hart District Governing Board Regular Meeting
The intersection of Newhall Ranch Road and McBean Parkway will be closed Tuesday, Sept. 25, from 8:30 p.m. to 4:30 a.m., for the Federal Overlay Project being completed by the city of Santa Clarita to resurface the road.
Newhall Ranch Road, McBean Parkway Intersection to Close Tuesday Night
The California High-Speed Rail Authority has set an open house meeting in Agua Dulce on Saturday, Sept. 29 to gather public comment on the Palmdale to Burbank project section, which would closely follow Highway 14 through the Santa Clarita Valley.
Sept. 29: Open House on Proposed High-Speed Rail Route Thru SCV
Among the bills recently passed by California lawmakers and signed into law Thursday by Gov. Jerry Brown was Assembly Bill 3212, designed to strengthen the state's consumer protections for service members and military families, including California National Guard soldiers and airmen.
Brown Signs Bill Boosting Consumer Protection for Service Members
TMU All-American senior Benji Tembo scored in overtime, handing The Master's a 3-2 victory over the visiting Flames on Reese Field on Thursday.
Tembo, Mangan Lead Mustangs to OT Victory
College of the Canyons has opened registration for a series of free, short-term career skills classes this fall in the afternoons, evenings and online.
COC Offers No-Cost Skills Classes Afternoons, Evenings, Online
A roundtable discussion about a proposed Los Angeles County fee-based business registration program is set for the Stevenson Ranch Library on Tuesday, Sept. 25 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Sept. 25: Roundtable on County’s Proposed Business Registration Fee
The next meeting of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is set for Tuesday, Sept. 25, starting at 9:30 a.m.
Sept. 25: LA County Board of Supervisors Meeting