Video appears to show George Gascón accusing crowd of 'not having enough education to keep their mouth shut'
POMONA, Calif. - A cell phone video captures a tense moment between Los Angeles County DA George Gascón and a grieving family during a meeting in Pomona.
FOX 11's Bill Melugin obtained a video that showed Gascón telling a group of people that "It’s unfortunate that some people do not have enough education to keep their mouth shut for a moment so we can talk."
Following Gascón's remark, a woman yelled at Gascón telling the embattled DA that her son was a murder victim. Melugin reports the woman yelling at Gascón is the mother of Joshua Rodriguez, who was kidnapped, tortured and murdered in 2015.
"My son matters," the woman told Gascón in the video.
After the video made rounds on social media, Gascón's office told FOX 11 the DA was not aware of the fact that the group gathering outside a Pomona courthouse were family members of a murder victim.
FOX 11 obtained the following statement from Gascón:
"While speaking to colleagues outside of the office there were individuals yelling on opposite sides of the crowd. I did not understand what they were yelling about until later, let alone that they were victims. Regardless, it's not how I should have reacted. Clearly this family is in pain, and I will be contacted them to speak directly and hear them out. The defendants in this case are all facing life in prison."
The incident comes as Gascón made a 180-degree turn from his original stance on making sweeping policy changes as the new LA County DA.
Before reversing course, Gascón had planned to end sentence enhancements for certain crimes -- like hate crime allegations, elder abuse allegations, child abuse allegations and several other types of crimes -- prompting an uproar from the victims' families.
All week, FOX 11 spoke with families grieving and/or left traumatized by the violent crimes. Some feared the suspects would either get away with a slap on the wrist due to Gascón's new policies.
- LA County DA George Gascón reverses course, says he will allow certain sentencing enhancements
- LA DA George Gascón's sweeping policy changes bring concerns to some
- Newly elected DA George Gascón to reopen several controversial officer-involved shooting cases
- DA Gascon's policy changes include dismissing special charges against accused cop killer
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