How Can the City Save
Can the District Attorney
Can the transfer of the Misdemeanor
prosecution save money?
Will the District Attorney provide the same
level of service?
Why transfer now?
District Attorney’s Office
Approximately 900 Employees
5 Office locations Countywide
300 Deputy District Attorneys
120 Sworn District Attorney Investigators
2004 Budget $98 Million
1994 - SANDAG and San Diego Municipal Court completed a report.
1995 – A study was completed by District Attorney Paul Pfingst.
1.3 to 2.3 million dollar savings.
1998 – Consolidation of Courts.
In the years 1998, 1999, 2004 and 2005, the San Diego Taxpayers
Association requested the city to review the prospect of transferring
responsibility of prosecuting Misdemeanors to the District Attorney.
1999 – A study was completed by District Attorney Paul Pfingst.
2004 – Two Performance Institute Reports.
2005 - Analysis by District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis.
Is It Legal?
In 1995, former City Attorney John Witt requested an opinion
from the State Attorney General on the question of
transferring the responsibility of prosecuting Misdemeanor
crimes to the District Attorney.
The written opinion of the Attorney General was that upon a
vote of the City Council, transfer of the duties could take
The opinion also stated that the County of San Diego could
recover costs from the City of San Diego for such service by
contract and resolution of the Board of Supervisors of the
County of San Diego.
There are 15 counties in California with
populations over 500,000 citizens.
13 county District Attorney’s offices prosecute
State Misdemeanor crimes.
The District Attorney of Orange County
prosecutes State Misdemeanor crimes in all cities
in their county except the city of Anaheim.
The 15 county, the District Attorney of Los
Angeles declined to prosecute Misdemeanors.
The transfer will save
The first year’s budget will be
approximately $10.8 million, beginning in
This amount includes full salary and
benefits for a staff of 92.
The budget includes $639,103 in one-time
start up costs.
Benefits to the citizens of the City of
Cost savings in the millions of dollars by implementing an
efficient and effective system that will reduce redundancies.
Reduce overtime cost to the SDPD by combining multiple
crime cases. Keeping police officers on the beat and not in the
SDPD to work with one agency to facilitate the prosecution of
Ability to complete analysis of prosecution data for each
Streamlined process to evaluate each case for appropriate
Ability for the mayor and council members to work with one
agency on all prosecution-related issues.
Benefits to the Criminal Justice
Reduced transportation costs to the Sheriff’s Department
Elimination of duplicate work by court personnel in
Attorneys would benefit from the consolidation because
prosecutors and defense attorneys would save time by not
having to appear at separate hearings.
The District Attorney, as the sole prosecuting agency,
could resolve many of the misdemeanors simultaneously
with the felonies.
Support staff workload would be streamlined by reducing
the numbers of times files must be retrieved and re-filed.
The District Attorney will
provide the same or better level
The District Attorney is committed to
excellence in all prosecutions.
The District Attorney prosecutes
Misdemeanor crimes for all other San Diego
county jurisdictions including 17 cities.
DA MISDEMEANOR PROSECUTIONS 2004
91% Conviction Rate
OTHER MISD VANDALISM
9% CONTEMPT OF
DV ASSAULT (NON-
HIT AND RUN
Accountable to the Mayor and City Council for costs and services they
Community Liaisons to work with the Mayor and Council members to
be accountable to the citizens of San Diego.
Comprehensive case management system.
Economy of scale of services already in place.
Participates with the Family Justice Center.
The District Attorney’s Office maintains a conviction rate of 95% for
Felonies and 91% for Misdemeanors.
The District Attorney’s Office maintains a
conviction rate of 95% for Felonies and 91%
The District Attorney is
Municipal Court Judge
Arraignment Court handling all cases filed as misdemeanors
Trial Setting Department handling all misdemeanor cases
settled before trial
Lead Judge in the Domestic Violence Court
Created the Central San Diego Superior Court Drug Court,
specializing in misdemeanors
Handled Homeless Court and participated in Stand Down
Judicial Liaison to the Community Court Committee
Superior Court Judge
Juvenile Court Judge
With a contract for services
Minimal disruption of service to the citizens
Neighborhood Prosecution Unit
Domestic Violence and Child Abuse cases
would continue to be handled in the Family
Screening and Arraignment Unit
Criminal Trial Unit
Code Enforcement Unit
Consumer and Environmental Protection
Child Abuse and Domestic Violence Unit
8 sworn peace officer investigators
49 support personnel
92 Attorney’s and Staff
Now is the Right Time!
Current Budget cycle for FY2005/2006.
Savings to the City of San Diego of millions of
dollars without a reduction of service.
Reorganization of the City Attorney’s office.
Outstanding working relation with the staff of the
The District Attorney can assume the duties of
prosecuting Misdemeanor crimes from the City of
San Diego as effectively and for less cost than the
City Attorney’s Office.
Working with the City Attorney, the transfer can
take place during the FY 2005/2006 budget year.
No only is this Good Government it also is Good
Business for the City of San Diego and it’s citizens.
Refer to the City manager for further study and
inclusion in the Fiscal Year 2005/2006 budget
The District Attorney and the staff of the District
Attorney will be available at any time to answer
any questions the Mayor, City Council, City
Attorney, City Manager or their staffs may have.
We stand ready to assist the City