One of the public service agencies up for election this year is the office of district attorney, an office charged with ensuring justice for our county, thus making it eminently important. Two men are in competition for district attorney in this election.
The incumbent, Cliff Newell, has never tried a felony case. He is the first district attorney in Nevada County who has not once gone into court to try a case during his tenure, even as the budget cuts have left us with fewer deputy attorneys to handle ever growing caseloads.
In 2011, he was investigated by the Sacramento Bee for impropriety in his role in a hard-money operation of Gold Country Lenders. Matthew Renda of The Union said in a 2012 report, “In early June 2011, the Sacramento Bee published an article and an editorial that said Newell showed ‘an appalling lack of discretion’ that ‘irreparably damaged his ability to administer fair and impartial justice’ due to his connection to hard-money lenders in the county.”
Newell’s opponent in this 2014 election is David Alkire. Mr. Alkire has the qualities we need in our elected representative. He has over 40 years of experience as an attorney — 10 years as a deputy district attorney in Los Angeles and Monterey counties, 20 years in private practice and a resume that includes both the prosecution and defense of a vast array of felony cases, including capital murder cases. Mr. Alkire has been endorsed by both the Deputy District Attorney and Public Defender Employee Association, the weight of which speaks to his ability to work effectively with and gain the respect of those in our county’s justice system.
The quality of our justice system is of vital importance to each and every one of us; David Alkire can and will bring that quality.