City may see SF-8 costs reimbursed

Attorney General Jerry Brown’s decision to prosecute seven men charged with murdering a San Francisco police sergeant more than three decades ago led to the city incurring a legal defense bill of about $2 million. Now The City is fighting to have those costs reimbursed.

Public Defender Jeff Adachi said he is in the process of drafting a bill and talking with state representatives about getting repaid.

Adachi, who has long been fighting for more city dollars to hire staffers, said Wednesday during a Board of Supervisors budget committee hearing that he plans to meet next week with the Bar Association, which provided “provided representation to most of the individuals in the case,” to discuss seeking reimbursement.

“The argument there is that because the prosecution was brought by the state attorney general and not by the local district attorney, who declined prosecution in that case, that the state should pay for those costs. There is some precedent for that,” Adachi said.

The City is looking at an operating deficit this year of $45 million and next year of $522.2 million. This fiscal year, the Superior Court is expected to ask The City for an additional $3 million to cover legal defense expenses.

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