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Los Angeles Prosecutor Working for Gascón Posts $50,000 Bond After Felony Arrest

Los Angeles Prosecutor Working for Gascón Posts $50,000 Bond After Felony Arrest

Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascón speaks in Los Angeles on March 28, 2024. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

4/29/2024

Updated: 4/29/2024

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A high-ranking Los Angeles County prosecutor who was arrested April 24 has posted $50,000 bail and has been released from jail.
Diana Teran, 60, an assistant district attorney working for District Attorney George Gascón was released April 27, according to Los Angeles County inmate records.
California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced charges Wednesday against Ms. Teran of 11 felony violations for repeated and unauthorized use of data from confidential, statutorily protected peace officer files. She was also charged with using prohibited data from a government computer system without permission.
Each count carries a prison sentence of up to three years.
Ms. Teran was employed by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department as a constitutional policing advisor in 2018 when she allegedly accessed confidential law enforcement files, according to Mr. Bonta.
She then allegedly illegally used the data after joining the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, Mr. Bonta claims. She was hired by the district attorney for one of the most powerful positions in his office—overseeing law enforcement prosecutions.
The criminal complaint alleges Ms. Teran accessed information on 11 sheriff’s deputies.
“No one is above the law,” Mr. Bonta said in a press release last week. “Public officials are called to serve the people and the State of California with integrity and honesty.”
Ms. Teran earned nearly $364,000 in pay and benefits in 2022 as assistant bureau chief, according to Transparent California, a nonprofit organization that posts public salaries obtained through public records requests.
As a top advisor to Mr. Gascón, Ms. Teran focused on ethics and integrity. In 2021, his office said Ms. Teran advised the district attorney on post-conviction review, Brady compliance—a California rule that requires prosecutors turn over all favorable material evidence on guilt or punishment to the defense—and justice system integrity.
She also supervised units that handled some of the office’s most politically charged cases.
Ms. Teran’s name was removed from the office’s organization chart Monday.
Mr. Gascón said in a statement to local media last week he couldn’t comment on personnel matters but planned to comply with the investigation. He also asserted that his office complied with the law.
“When I took office, we developed a protocol that ensured we complied with our constitutional obligations under Brady—which requires us to turn over potentially exculpatory evidence to the defense, a category that includes law enforcement’s prior misconduct—while simultaneously complying with state and federal law around privacy,” Mr. Gascón said in the statement. “I stand by that protocol.
Mr. Teran made headlines last year when a lawsuit filed by former Assistant Head Deputy District Attorney Amy Pentz claimed she delayed announcing a decision to not file charges against a deputy in an excessive force case that might have favored former Sheriff Alex Villanueva’s reelection chances.
In the lawsuit, Ms. Pentz said she was reassigned after questioning Ms. Teran’s decision. Mr. Villanueva lost his reelection bid in November 2022 to Sheriff Robert Luna.
Ms. Teran’s attorney James Spertus did not immediately return a request for comment.
Ryan Erlich, vice president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys of Los Angeles County, the union representing the county’s deputy district attorneys, said the arrest raised questions about Mr. Gascón’s “inner circle.”
“The revelations in the Attorney General’s complaint are new, but not shocking,” Mr. Erlich wrote in a statement Friday. “When it comes to discipline, this District Attorney has one set of rules for line deputies and another set of rules for the most loyal sycophants in his inner circle.”
The case may not be resolved before voters decide whether to reelect Mr. Gascón in the general election in November 2024, according to Mr. Erlich.
An office memo suggested Ms. Teran had been moved out of management, but it was unclear whether the move was temporary or permanent, according to the union.
A spokeswoman at the district attorney’s office said they couldn’t say whether Ms. Teran was still employed.
“Our office does not comment on personnel matters,” Venus Dunn told The Epoch Times.
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Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

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Jill McLaughlin is an award-winning journalist covering politics, environment, and statewide issues. She has been a reporter and editor for newspapers in Oregon, Nevada, and New Mexico. Jill was born in Yosemite National Park and enjoys the majestic outdoors, traveling, golfing, and hiking.

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