'DA’s office failed': Barger criticizes lenient sentence for confessed child molester

Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger criticized District Attorney George Gascón on Thursday over the lenient sentence given to a confessed child molester, who is now 26 years old. 

"The outcome of the Tubbs case is unsatisfactory," said Barger.

Hannah Tubbs, who now identifies as a transgender female and is now 26, was just a few days shy of her 18th birthday when she sexually molested a 10-year-old girl in 2014.

LA County District Attorney George Gascón has a policy of not charging anyone under 18 as an adult. 

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Confessed child molester could serve little or no time; prosecutors furious at LA County DA

"Judge Barrera’s hands were tied today – due to the fact that the DA’s office failed to file a motion to transfer Tubbs to adult criminal court, which is where she rightly belongs," said Barger. "Instead, we’re left with a 26-year-old individual sentenced to two years in a juvenile facility in isolation, separated by sight and sound from the other juveniles."

The assault itself happened on New Year’s Day 2014. Tubbs walked into a woman’s restroom at Denny’s in Palmdale and hid in a stall. When a 10-year-old girl walked in by herself, Tubbs grabbed her and sexually molested her.

"The assault went on until someone walked into the restroom and scared [her] off. [She] fled from the restaurant, and [she] went unidentified for several years until a cold DNA hit identified [her] as someone who was arrested in the state of Idaho," LA County Deputy District Attorney John McKinney previously told FOX 11.

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During his time on the run, McKinney said Tubbs amassed a lengthy criminal record that included assaults with deadly weapons and convictions. In 2019, Tubbs was brought back to Los Angeles for prosecution on the sexual assault of the 10-year-old girl.

"What is happening is our district attorney is ushering [her] right out the door, back onto the streets of this county and God knows where else [she] might roam. It’s madness, it makes a mockery of our criminal justice system," McKinney previously told FOX 11.

"To carry out justice, all of the oars in the criminal justice system must be rowing in the same direction. Today, that simply didn’t happen," said Barger.

When FOX 11 asked Gascón for comment, he released a letter he sent to Barger last week, which said in part, "Tubb’s conduct was deplorable. I am shocked and outraged that she evaded capture for so long.  The harm that she caused is irreparable. Tubb’s has been ‘sentenced’ to our County’s secure treatment facility for youth (STFY). Unfortunately, since a permanent location for STFY has yet to be approved, county jail is the only available detention center available for Tubbs to wait."

"However, in subsequent cases, Tubbs legally was an adult. Other jurisdictions had no other choice. Where I do agree with your assertion is that Tubbs likely will not face punishment proportionate to the victim's trauma," Gascón's letter to Barger continued.

FOX 11's Gina Silva contributed to this report.

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