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California Briefing / Los Angeles

Bratton backs Weiss for council

February 03, 2009|Maeve Reston

Los Angeles Police Chief William J. Bratton on Monday endorsed city attorney candidate and current City Councilman Jack Weiss, citing his work as chairman of the Public Safety Committee on issues such as gang crime, gun control, expanding the LAPD's DNA testing capabilities and the city's anti-terrorism preparations.

Weiss has been one of the most vocal supporters of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's plan to hire 1,000 additional police officers -- an expense some council members have questioned at a time when the city faces a $433-million deficit.

"I can think of nobody who has worked more vigorously on behalf of the residents of this city on issues of public safety than Jack," Bratton said during a morning news conference, stressing that he was speaking as a voter and private citizen.

At a news conference late last month, former Deputy Dist. Atty. Carmen "Nuch" Trutanich, who is also running for city attorney, was endorsed by Councilman Dennis Zine, Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley and Sheriff Lee Baca -- all of whom argued Trutanich was the best candidate to increase cooperation between the city attorney's office and their offices.

Baca had previously endorsed Weiss as well, but at the Jan. 22 news conference he emphasized that he trusted Trutanich "to build relationships that strengthen the city attorney's office."

-- Maeve Reston

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