By Antonio R. Harvey | OBSERVER Staff Writer
The California Legislative Black Caucus flexed its political clout Monday, endorsing former prosecutor Alana Mathews for Sacramento County District Attorney.
The local election is June 7, 2022.
Mathews would be the first Black person to fill Sacramento County’s top law enforcement job.
“The California Legislative Black Caucus (CLBC) proudly endorses Alana Mathews,” said Caucus Chair Sen. Steven Bradford (D-Gardena). “We are excited about the potential opportunity for her to bring equity, fairness, inclusion, and reform to the prosecutor’s seat.”
Mathews is a graduate of Sacramento’s McGeorge School of Law and Spelman College in Atlanta. She was appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown as the Public Adviser for the California Energy Commission in 2013 and reappointed in 2016.
“I’m honored to receive endorsements from many of the Black leaders in California — I admire the work that they all do,” Mathews said Sept. 18 before attending a campaign event. “This is a significant endorsement as we seek more on the local and state levels.”
Mathews also said she would be “rolling out” more diverse endorsements from other individuals and groups in the upcoming weeks and hopes that others would have “federal implications.”
Sacramento County D.A. Anne Marie Schubert, a former Republican, is running for state Attorney General in 2022 against incumbent Rob Bonta.
Mathews was a Sacramento County deputy district attorney for eight years, working her way up from misdemeanor jury trials to prosecuting cases of domestic violence, juvenile delinquency, and prison crimes, among others. She also served as a senior consultant to the Climate Change Committee in the state legislature.
Mathews currently works with the Prosecutors Alliance of California, a group of prosecutors committed to reforming California’s criminal justice system through smart, safe, modern solutions that advance public safety, human dignity, and community well-being.
Mathews said one of the reasons she is running for office is to ensure accountability in law enforcement is carried out in a fashion that’s fair, just and responsible, and that working with police is “central” to the D.A. office’s work. She added she has worked well and respectfully with officers, “but there has been little to no accountability in that office when it comes to police misconduct,” she said. “If you violate the law you should be held accountable. Without that it undermines trust in the system.”
This past year, the CLBC has authored police reform legislation to include changes in the use of force — banning chokeholds, instituting age requirements for officers, and accountability, among other improvements.
Mathews already has been vocal about her intent to change the office’s culture, enforce change, improve working relationships between the community and law enforcement, and provide solutions to reduce crime.
“I want to redefine a path to safety, fairness and justice,” Mathews said.