Financial Disclosures Reveal DA Todd Spitzer Employs COVID Pandemic Profiteer Under State and Federal Investigations

SANTA ANA – According to campaign finance filings made public in just the past 24 hours, Pete Hardin’s campaign for Orange County District Attorney raised over $380,000 in just three and a half months, therefore outraising lifetime politician and incumbent DA, Todd Spitzer. 

“I am humbled by the unprecedented support this community has shown me in the first few months of our campaign,” said former Marine Judge Advocate Pete Hardin. “I look forward to working with the community to build on this momentum. It’s time to bring integrity, transparency, and accountability to Orange County’s criminal justice system.”

Unfortunately, but unsurprisingly, Spitzer’s campaign finance reports reveal that he has retained John Thomas, a known pandemic profiteer and U.S. Department of Justice investigation target, for campaign consulting. Spitzer paid Thomas $23,000 in 2021 after paying him over $1,000,000 for previously serving as his Chief Campaign Strategist.

“As Todd Spitzer claims he ‘refused to tolerate’ COVID price gouging and asserts he ‘went after COVID-19 related scams,’ he’s been funneling thousands of dollars to a man facing criminal investigations for allegedly price gouging pandemic supplies,” said former Marine Judge Advocate Pete Hardin.  “This is an office tasked with seeking truth and justice, and it’s a stain on this community that the District Attorney has such an adversarial relationship with the truth, let alone a willingness to associate with such unscrupulous individuals.” Beginning in March 2020, Thomas established medical supply company Blue Flame and allegedly sold pandemic supplies at 800% markups.  He is facing multiple state and federal investigations. Spitzer promised in May 2020 to end his relationship with Thomas, yet over a year later he remains on the payroll.   

The ties to Thomas are just the latest in Spitzer’s sea of scandals.  Four women in Spitzer’s office have filed claims asserting Spitzer promoted an employee and close friend despite having been made aware of the sexual harassment complaints against him. Spitzer later allowed the employee, who was the best man at his wedding, to retire with top flight benefits. Spitzer also attempted to drop sexual assault charges against high-profile defendants, leading a judge to remove him from the case.  Survivors of the sexual assault survivors were “dragged through the mud” and “grossly mistreated” by Spitzer for two and a half years, leading two of them to abandon their case. 

Spitzer has been involved in an evidence booking scandal, a jailhouse informant scandal, and has defamed a victim of OC’s deadliest mass shooting as retaliation for peaceful protest. Spitzer has also defended a DNA collection program known informally as “Spit and Acquit” that coerces defendants to give up their DNA to law enforcement, a practice the ACLU has called “unconstitutional.


Pete Hardin is a former Judge Advocate in the U.S. Marine Corps, Deputy District Attorney, Special Assistant United States Attorney, and one of Southern California’s leading litigators running for Orange County District Attorney. Pete entered public service when, in 2005, he earned his commission as a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps. A combat veteran, Pete served in Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2011 and 2012 as a member of 1st Reconnaissance Battalion. Pete is a member of the Democratic Party.

Orange County’s rapidly changing electorate has led Democrats to now outnumber Republicans in Orange County holding a 4.1% voter registration advantage.