SF Public Defender Mano Raju’s Statement on Appointment of New District Attorney
SAN FRANCISCO – Yesterday, Mayor London Breed announced she will be appointing Brooke Jenkins as the interim District Attorney of San Francisco. In response, Mano Raju, the elected Public Defender of San Francisco, issues the following statement:
“I look forward to engaging interim District Attorney Jenkins in open conversations about how we can all best serve the health and safety of San Franciscans, including reforms and practices to help mitigate and minimize the harm to people who become entangled in the criminal legal system. I strongly encourage DA Jenkins to prioritize opportunities for prevention and intervention over criminalization and incarceration. From working in our criminal system that is plagued with injustices, including a long history of racial, gender, and LGBTQ inequity, public defenders know – and district attorneys should know – that real public safety for all communities comes when we invest in people and in prevention, not in punishment. When we talk about accountability, we must also talk about the accountability of the systems that criminalize and inflict state-sponsored violence on communities who are poor and communities of color, rather than provide real and equal opportunities to housing, employment, mental health, and other support services.
My office celebrated our 100-year anniversary last year. Our attorneys, paralegals, social workers, investigators and all our staff are warriors for justice inside and outside the courtroom. While we will find opportunities to collaborate where there are points of agreement with the new interim District Attorney, we will also stridently oppose any rollbacks on criminal justice reforms. The Public Defender’s Office remains deeply committed to providing vigorous representation for community members who are system-impacted and to fighting for a more just and equitable society, especially for the most vulnerable.”