A Los Angeles mother who was struck by a hit-and-run driver while walking her baby last summer said she now supports recalling LA District Attorney George Gascon, despite voting for him in 2020.
Video of the horrific incident recently began circulating online along with the news that the 17-year-old perpetrator, who was 16 at the time of the incident, was sentenced Friday to five months in juvenile camp.
The hit-and-run driver knocked the mother off her feet and smashed into her baby’s stroller.
Soon thereafter, video captured a good Samaritan ramming his truck into the driver to keep him from fleeing the scene.
WARNING: The following video contains graphic violence that some viewers may find disturbing.
[VIDEO: GRAPHIC WARNING]
5 months in probation camp for the teen who plowed his car into a mom and her 8-month-old son.
— RecallDAGeorgeGascon (@DAGasconRecall) June 4, 2022
Fox News national correspondent Bill Melugin spoke with the victim.
“She is a Democrat who voted for LA DA George Gascon. Now, she wants him recalled following his office’s handling of this case, and she is outraged about the light sentence,” Melugin tweeted Tuesday.
Rachel, who asked only to be identified by her first name, appeared that same day on the Fox News program “Tucker Carlson Tonight” to share more about her experience.
She recounted that the driver “absolutely” struck her and her then-eight month-old son on purpose.
“I made eye contact with him as he was approaching us. I screamed for him to stop,” Rachel said.
She noted the teenager had a felony record and was on probation when the incident happened.
Carlson asked Rachel what message she felt the light sentence that the perpetrator received sent.
“It sends messages to criminals that it’s okay to do bad things because we are not going to punish you, we are going to punish the victims instead,” Rachel responded.
“I’m just beside myself with the comments that [Gascon] has come out with on Twitter, citing that California law says that the punishment is fair, when in fact it is his policies that he put into place that prevents us from getting appropriate justice,” she added.
Rachel explained why she had cast her ballot for Gascon in 2020.
“I voted for this guy because I believed that our prisons do need some reform, but rewarding criminals, violent criminals, for their actions is very far from any kind of reformation that anybody would think is appropriate,” she said.
In a series of tweets Monday, Gascon defended his office’s actions in Rachel’s case.
LA prosecutors “charged the minor with the most serious offenses possible under the law: two counts of felony assault & one count of felony leaving the scene of an accident that caused injury without exchanging information. The minor pleaded guilty,” Gascon wrote.
He rejected the notion the minor could have been charged with attempted murder despite the driver plowing his car right into Rachel and her baby.
“To charge that offense, our office would have to be able to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the minor specifically intended to kill the victims. There was no evidence of that,” he wrote.
Contrary to what some have claimed, it is not “attempted murder” under CA law. To charge that offense, our office would have to be able to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the minor specifically intended to kill the victims. There was no evidence of that. 3/6
— George Gascón (@LADAOffice) June 6, 2022
Gascon further related that the light sentence had nothing to do with his criminal reform policies.
“The truth is our office simply followed California law,” he tweeted.
A group seeking to recall Gascon responded, “Stop lying to the public: (1) Intent to kill can be shown w/ circumstantial evidence (swerving the car directly at the victims), (2) Assault w/ deadly weapon should have been charged, but your policy forbade that, (3) you ensured a light sentence by not charging w/ said offenses.”
Stop lying to the public: (1) Intent to kill can be shown w/ circumstantial evidence (swerving the car directly at the victims), (2) Assault w/ deadly weapon should have been charged, but your policy forbade that, (3) you ensured a light sentence by not charging w/ said offenses. https://t.co/zJ4ZPw87mF
— RecallDAGeorgeGascon (@DAGasconRecall) June 6, 2022
The Recall DA George Gascon campaign said in a news release last week it has gathered over 500,000 signatures of the approximately 567,000 needed to qualify for the ballot.
Our campaign to recall George Gascon has reached 500,000 signatures as of May 31!
To qualify, we must collect 566,857 signatures by July 6.
Reach out to your fellow Angelenos and help recall George Gascon!
Sign the petition: https://t.co/NKtY22obXc#RecallDAGeorgeGascon pic.twitter.com/qPxMEVmNHE
— RecallDAGeorgeGascon (@DAGasconRecall) June 2, 2022
Tuesday, residents of San Francisco voted overwhelmingly to recall progressive Distinct Attorney Chesa Boudin, who like Gascon has followed what critics characterize as a soft-on-crime approach.
Both Los Angeles and San Francisco have seen significant spikes in violent crime and theft under the “reform” policies instituted by Gascon and Boudin.