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May 24-30, 2006

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Letters to the Editor


Sinunu's Missteps

This is a response, and more, to DA candidate Karyn Sinunu's letter to the editor in Metro (Letters, April 26) complaining about "D.A. Confidential." Her word parsing and splitting hairs will not defend her missteps as the de facto incumbent.

DA Hiring: Sinunu has been charged with the hiring of attorneys for the Santa Clara County District Attorney's office for approximately 10 years. Her hand-chosen panel interviews and ranks the candidates on an employment list. She makes the final recommendations to the DA. The DA rarely, if ever, varies from her recommendations. Usually, the DA does not meet the individuals until after they are hired. He signs the appointments as a technicality under the requirements of the county charter and ordinance provisions.

The Juvenile Restitution Controversy: District Attorney George Kennedy gave Neil Kimball, a fine lawyer, marching orders to attempt to legally justify Sinunu's conduct in the case. I am not persuaded by his strained four-page memo submitted for publication. Neither are the victims.

Appellate Court Reversal of Sinunu's Molestation Case: The appellate court criticized her handling of the Montez case due to her introduction of illegal evidence. The court set aside the conviction and released Montez from prison. In her letter to the editor of Metro, Sinunu failed to acknowledge her errors in judgment. Instead, she blamed the trial court for its rulings on the admission of evidence. Sinunu was the prosecutor who brought the illegal evidence before the court and she was the prosecutor who urged the trial court to allow the illegal evidence.

DNA Evidence: Sinunu deceptively stated that "DNA proved [Dr. Daniel Lucas] was innocent of rape and necessarily the related offenses." The related offenses were two separately committed crimes involving two different victims, both of whom identified Dr. Lucas at a formal court hearing in which a judge determined there was probably cause of guilt. There was no DNA evidence in those cases.

The Kan and Lee Case: In a recent statement, Sinunu defended the prosecutor's suppression of evidence in the prosecution of Palo Alto officers Kan and Lee. The Ethics Committee of the California District Attorneys Association states: "The prosecutor must disclose material exculpatory evidence to a criminal defendant." The citizens of Santa Clara County expect integrity and fair play from their prosecutors.

William W. Larsen, Assistant District Attorney (ret.) Santa Clara County, Belmont

Proud to Support Sinunu

This letter is in response to your article "DA Confidential" (Cover Story, April 12). For reasons unknown to me, it was pointed out that my wife and I each contributed to the campaign of Karyn Sinunu for District Attorney. What it failed to note, and what the reporter failed to determine, was that my wife and I have been friends of Karyn and her family since before Karyn considered going to law school.

Maybe Metro should do an article on the hundreds of people who are supporting Karyn Sinunu and how many people in the community are supporting her with the contributions that are necessary for her to have the voters learn just how special a person she is and how good a district attorney she will be.

My wife and I are very proud to support her financially and very proud of her work, her independence and her character.

Thomas J. Nolan, Palo Alto

What Good Was March?

As a representative of San Jose's radical community, I was deeply frustrated and hurt by the mass consumerism that controlled the May 1 March in San Jose ("Lynch Pinned," The Fly, May 17).

The March in San Jose was taken over by nationalistic tendencies, as poor Mexicanos and other immigrants were brainwashed into waving thousands of American flags—the same flags that symbolize the oppression and genocide of la gente (the people).

Not only was the rally on King and Story Roads taken over by consumer capitalism and mainstream radio stations, but community activists were threatened with violence and accused of being Communists as some tried to address the crowd at the rally before the march. Teachers who brought their students out of school also threatened these children that they would be punished if they left their supervision.

As the march began to take off around 3pm, crowd control measures were taken by the "organizers" to keep people off the streets and on the sidewalks. The overwhelming majority of Mexicanos played into these control tactics, as "security" rolled out yellow caution tape to herd the crowd off to the side as if they were cattle. The fear that was instilled in the crowd by the "organizers" turned into hate towards anyone who would not conform.

Instead of marching to Caesar Chavez Park (Chavez represents a hero and role model to Mexicanos and other migrant working communities), the march was routed to the HP Pavilion, where Clear Channel Concerts and Sharks Hockey Games are held.

I have to ask: Why?

Overall, the march was a total disaster, co-opted by the state, which brainwashed the people into a nationalistic stupor. People will go back to their low-wage, slave jobs and nothing will have changed. The Capitalists will still be on top and San Jose will still be a police state.

Lailo, San Jose


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