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On Wednesday, Alex Bastian, the “Special Advisor” for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced on LinkedIn that he would be moving on:
I have an announcement to make! After more than 12 years of public service in both the Los Angeles and San Francisco District Attorney offices – having advanced public safety both in the courtroom and through reform efforts – I’m excited to announce that I have accepted the position of becoming the President and CEO of the Hotel Council of San Francisco! The Hotel Council represents the hospitality and broader tourism industry, an industry that has been significantly impacted and hard hit due to the pandemic. I’m so excited to join the Hotel Council at this pivotal moment in history. As someone who was born and raised in San Francisco, I know first hand that the City has so much to offer and is one of the most beautiful places worldwide. I know for a fact that it will become one of the top tourist destinations in the world once again.
Exactly a year and three months after taking the job, Gascón’s consigliere is jumping ship.
In March of 2021, Alex Bastian had been assistant district attorney and deputy chief of staff for the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office. When his old boss George Gascón, now the Los Angeles County District Attorney called, Bastian came running.
Bastian arrived with much fanfare and bravado, immediately creating a new communications method to wrangle the Los Angeles press corps, which just as immediately rubbed veteran correspondents the wrong way.
KFI correspondent Steve Gregory was not impressed:
Yesterday, at Gascón’s 100 Days in Office online press conference, Gregory let it be known that all media questions were being filtered through Gascón’s newest addition to his executive team: Alex Bastian.
Gregory appeared on KFI’s John & Ken Show and reported on this unorthodox methodology in handling the press. Correspondents are now required to send a text message with their questions, and then Bastian either allows those questions to be asked, or he tacitly ignores them.
“They’re going to school us L.A. press people on how to do media,” Gregory surmised.
Bastian’s communication methods succeeded as well as Gascón’s special directives. Bastian instead spent most of the year trying to answer (and dodge) questions about the embattled Woke D.A.’s failed policies. Now with news that the Recall George Gascón organizers have reached their unverified signature goal ahead of the July 6 deadline (and plan to collect more), Bastian may well have realized he is fighting a losing PR battle.
Gaslighting and misinformation are just so last year.
As Managing Editor Jennifer Van Laar reported, Bastian tried to explain why at the parole hearing of Manson murderer Bruce Davis there was no DDA present to speak on behalf of the families.
When asked for comment about the Davis parole hearing and the family members’ concerns, Gascon’s spokesman, Alex Bastian, said that office policy is to “continue to provide a victims advocate to support family members” who still choose to attend the parole hearings even though the DA’s office is on record supporting the grant of parole. What good does that do, Mr. Bastian? The victims advocate can’t testify or introduce evidence. Still, Martley disputes Bastian’s contention and says she was never informed about having a victims advocate.
Bastian also told Yahoo News:
“The prosecutors’ role ends at sentencing. There’s been a tug of war between public safety versus equity. The DA believes you can do both.”
Bastian also tried to explain away Gascón’s questionable associations with BLM activists and their attorney, Jorge Gonzalez, that may have been behind Gascón dropping train wrecking charges against said activists.
So, Bastian leaving after more than 10 years of working closely with Gascón comes as no surprise. Gascón has been skating on thin ice since the Hannah Tubbs debacle, and RedState has reported on the tone-deaf responses from that gross error, from the woman and baby who were run over by a teenager who skirted parole, and most recently, the death of two El Monte Police officers murdered by a repeat felon gang member who was paroled because of Gascón’s directives.
NEW: LA DA @GeorgeGascon office issues a statement regarding this case.
Their position is that placing a convicted felon gang member with a strike on his record on probation for possession of a gun by a felon was a “consistent” resolution at the time. @FoxNews pic.twitter.com/o0Q0ycrRT5
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) June 16, 2022
Notice that Bastian is not returning to anyone’s district attorney’s office. With the recall of Chesa Boudin in San Francisco, and now Gascón under the guillotine, it makes sense that he wants to shift his career from law enforcement to sales and promotion. It is probably infinitely easier to spout happy gas about San Francisco’s comeback than it is trying to prop up and defend a leader on the fast track to being removed.