New L.A. County Public Defender Appointed by Board of Supervisors

From left to right, deputy public defenders Jan Datomi and Susan Roe hold up signs protesting their new interim boss, Nichole Davis Tinkham, as they and other attorneys in the office say Tinkham is not qualified for the job. (Credit: Al Seib/Los Angeles Times)

From left to right, deputy public defenders Jan Datomi and Susan Roe hold up signs protesting their new interim boss, Nichole Davis Tinkham, as they and other attorneys in the office say Tinkham is not qualified for the job. (Credit: Al Seib/Los Angeles Times)

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has selected criminal defense attorney Ricardo Garcia as the county’s new public defender.

Garcia will take over as head of the oldest and largest public defender’s office in the nation, with 700 attorneys who provide criminal defense services for adults and juveniles who cannot afford their own lawyers. The office has been without a permanent head since Ronald Brown retired in 2016.

Garcia is a supervising attorney in the San Diego County public defender’s office. He started there as a trial attorney in 1995 and was later recruited to the Department of the Alternate Public Defender, which defends cases where the public defender may have a conflict of interest, often because multiple people have been charged in a single case.

From 2004 to 2006 Garcia served as the criminal justice director at the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, according to the news release. In that position he monitored the Los Angeles Police Department’s compliance with a federal civil rights consent decree and conditions in L.A. County jails.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.