Democrat Joe Gonzales wins second term as Bexar County District Attorney

Gonzales said his number one priority is curbing domestic violence. He also wants to continue progressive policies such as cite and release.

click to enlarge Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales speaks to reporters at his watch party Tuesday night. - Michael Karlis
Michael Karlis
Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales speaks to reporters at his watch party Tuesday night.
Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales declared victory over Republican Marc LaHood after early voting numbers gave the Democratic incumbent a commanding lead of 57% to 43%.

Gonzales gave his victory speech at around 9 p.m. Tuesday at a packed watch party at the Backyard on Broadway. Although many of the votes in Bexar County had yet to be counted, Gonzales told the Current his team was confident that his advantage would carry him to a second term.

Gonzales said his office's top priority this term is curbing domestic violence. He also pledged to continue promoting progressive reforms such as the county's cite and release policy, which lets police write citations to for minor infractions such as low-level marijuana possession instead of arresting and booking the offenders.

LaHood, who ran on a tough-on-crime campaign, had pledged to eliminate that program. He also ran ads accusing Gonzales of turning drug offenders out on the streets and refusing to work with SAPD — claims the DA's campaign called false.

"We will continue with cite and release because it's a tool that has proven to be effective, and it's a law enforcement tool because the officers on the streets make that decision," Gonzales said. "As long as they recognize the value in it, then we're going to continue with that."

Gonzales also said he looks forward to working with newly elected Bexar County Judge Peter Sakai, a Democrat, who declared victory over Republican Trish DeBerry earlier in the evening.

"I'm very confident that he will be a huge partner in crime fighting," Gonzales said. "Judge Sakai understands the importance of running the huge office that we have."

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