District Attorney Jackie Lacey has spent most of her professional life as a prosecutor, manager, and executive in the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
On December 3, 2012, she was sworn in as the 42nd District Attorney. Ms. Lacey oversees roughly 1,000 lawyers, nearly 300 investigators and about 800 support staff employees. She is the first woman and first African-American to serve as Los Angeles County District Attorney since the office was created in 1850.
A Los Angeles native and graduate of the University of Southern California Law School, Ms. Lacey joined the largest local prosecutorial office in the nation in 1986 as a deputy district attorney. She worked her way through the ranks as a front-line prosecutor.
While serving as a deputy district attorney, she prosecuted hundreds of serious criminal cases. Ms. Lacey won national attention for her successful prosecution of the county's first race-based hate crime murder. Ms. Lacey was recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice in May 2000 for prosecuting this case and for participating on the Law Enforcement Coordinating Committee. Also, Ms. Lacey twice was selected as Deputy District Attorney of the Month by her peers.
Starting in late 2000, Ms. Lacey took on management and executive roles in the District Attorney’s Office. Her duties included reviewing nearly every major case the office prosecuted, serving on the office’s special circumstance committee that reviews death penalty eligible cases and making high-level policy decisions affecting the pursuit of justice and the management of the office.
In 2011, she was named chief deputy district attorney and was responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the office. She also considered federal, state, and local legislation to determine the impact on the county’s criminal justice system.
Ms. Lacey has overseen the development of several groundbreaking crime-fighting initiatives within the office. They include the nation’s first Animal Cruelty Prosecution Program, the Graffiti Prosecution Program, and the Project Safe Neighborhoods Gun Prosecution Program.
She was key in the creation of alternative sentencing courts to deal with specific nonviolent offenders. These include the Los Angeles County Veterans Court, the Los Angeles County Women’s Reentry Court, and the Los Angeles County Co-Occurring Disorders Court.
As a result of Jackie’s career achievements in trial, and her leadership efforts, the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journal named her one of the Top Women Litigators of 2009.
She was elected to a four-year term of office. Ms. Lacey is a graduate of the University of California, Irvine, and Dorsey High School in Los Angeles. She and her husband, David, have two adult children.