Column: “Justice Does Matter”

Judicial candidate Patrick Hare seeks “collaborative versus adversarial” court system for LA County!

By Nick Antonicello

LA Public Defender Patrick Hare brings a unique resume and body of work that makes him well qualified to serve the voters of Los Angeles County.

In a four-way race for Judicial Post #151, Hare received an impressive 39.3% of the vote in the June Primary or 494,095 of the ballots cast. The second-place finisher was Karen Brako (www.brakoforjudge.com), who trailed with 24% or 301,745 votes. Third-place finisher Thomas Allison who received 19.1% of the vote or 240,670 ballots is an attorney in private practice and law professor, Allison has endorsed the Hare candidacy in the runoff.

Hare, who has raised roughly $75,000 to date and could spend upwards to $150,000 on his race, agreed that running for a judgeship has it’s challenges.

“There is a lack of information for voters. Most people don’t tune-in to such races,” noted the first-time hopeful.

Originally from Oregon, Hare attended McGill University in Canada and eventually transferred to California State University at Long Beach where he completed his Bachelor of Arts in 1986. Graduating magna cum laude with a concentration in Philosophy and Music, Hare is a baritone singer.

Beyond his love for the law, the 61-year old Hare is married nine years to his wife who is a family therapist and they reside in the neighborhood of Highland Park here in Los Angeles.

A life-long public servant, Hare is a former Deputy Public Defender in Orange County from 1989-90 where he represented minors in Juvenile Delinquency adjudications as well as representing parents in various Dependency proceedings.

Hare also served as an Adjunct Professor at Biola University from 2015-17 where he taught “Unequal Justice: Race, Class, and Gender in the Criminal Justice System.”

Hare joined the LA Public Defender’s Office in 1990 where he litigated numerous trials, representing 75 felony and 37 misdemeanor jury trials including a special circumstance murder trial; collaborative courts; mental health court focusing on competency; restoration of sanity, mentally disordered offenders, as well as conservatorships. Hare also worked in the Public Integrity Assurance Section, and reviewed post-conviction cases and filing writs in cases involving wrongful convictions due to police misconduct.

Since 2019, Hare is a Deputy in charge as a Supervisor regarding Felony arraignment, EDP and Master Calendar Courts while serving on a Bail Reform Committee and cooperating with other county stakeholders in developing pilot project evaluations. Hare is committed to reducing and eliminating long standing bail policies that disproportionately affect indigent communities of color while focusing also on public safety.

Beyond his public service, Hare also has a long record as a community involved advocate such as Producer of the annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert (2003-2103), founder & director of the Hollywood Mass Choir (2003-2013), an intern with the Redeemer Presbyterian Church of Compton (2005-06), a former member of the Board of Directors of the Hollywood Urban Project (2005-2006) and a guest lecturer for the LA Valley College, Fuller Theological Seminary.

I asked the candidate about the notion of an all-volunteer jury pool and while he called the current system flawed, he believes jury pools of twelve by nature promote diversity which is essential in the jury selection process.

“I want to broaden the jury pool.”

I also asked if the compensation for jury members would be increased?

“The government should compensate jurors for their time and energy. The question becomes how. Should they all be paid the same if one is a janitor or CEO? These are important things to consider.”

The candidate was also asked about homeless individuals serving on a jury?

“It’s a challenge. How does one communicate with a homeless juror prospect? How do we create such a system of recruitment?” offered Hare.

According to Hare, the salary of this judicial post is $222,000 and while he is eager too serve, his goal is to offer “heart and concern for the most vulnerable in society” as an elected jurist.

Hare believes some judges can be secluded from average members of society and he vows to serve as a “judge of character for all.”

“Justice matters to me in a very profound way. I want to create a more collaborative environment that’s less adversarial. Let’s work together for the best answer.”

Hare’s philosophical approach is simple, “to do justice, to be seen to do justice.”

Hare said explanation of verdicts are important to cases.

“What is the reasoning behind a decision.”

“The state of justice can be difficult. We need to right injustices.”

Hare described jurors as “conscripted” and they need to be thanked for their time and service.

“There time is valuable. I want to ensure clear communication. I want those who come to my courtroom to feel valued and appreciated.”

For more information on the candidacy of Patrick Hare, visit his website at www.patrickhareforjudge.com

Nick Antonicello is a longtime Venetian covering the political and governmental scene and how it impacts Venice Beach. Antonicello is covering the numerous judge’s races and if you have a take or opinion, please feel free to contact him at nantoni@mindspring.com

in Opinion
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