Amidst DA Spitzer’s racism scandal and findings that his discretionary charging procedures prejudice people of color, Spitzer has made no effort to implement tools necessary to fix disparities in charging

HUNTINGTON BEACH – A Public Records Act request reveals that DA Spitzer does not collect data on race, therefore undermining the office’s ability to fix recently discovered disparities in charging decisions, conviction rates, or sentence outcomes.

“You need good data to be a good manager,” said Marine Judge Advocate Pete Hardin. “DA Spitzer’s failure to keep race data reflects his indifference to the racial disparities perpetrated by his policies, and his inability to fix them. If elected District Attorney, I commit to proactively sharing office data with the public by way of a transparency portal on the DA’s website. We cannot ensure accountability without transparency.”

“I also commit to implementing a blind charging program, as recommended by the ACLU, to reduce the threat of implicit or explicit bias in charging decisions. Race should never determine how a defendant is treated by our criminal justice system.”

The revelation comes as Todd Spitzer confronts growing calls for his resignation after it was disclosed that he made racist remarks on multiple occasions, and attempted to cover-up the racist remarks through felonious conduct and violations of the Victims Bill of Rights. Last week, the ACLU found significant racial disparities resulting from Spitzer’s policies, all of which are occurring as hate crimes skyrocketed more than 1800% in Orange County last year.

“The people of Orange County deserve the numbers, and they deserve an explanation from the person elected to keep us safe,” said Pete Hardin


Current Orange County District Attorney Republican Todd Spitzer’s tenure has been defined by scandal. Most recently, Spitzer made racist remarks when discussing whether or not to seek the death penalty against a Black man. 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.