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The Husband Of LA County's District Attorney Has Been Charged After Pointing A Gun At Protesters

DA Jackie Lacey said her husband acted in fear when he pointed his handgun at Black Lives Matter organizers outside his home.

Last updated on August 4, 2020, at 3:42 p.m. ET

Posted on August 4, 2020, at 3:29 p.m. ET

Jackie Lacey speaks at a wooden podium into a microphone.
David Crane / AP

David Lacey, the husband of Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey, has been charged with three misdemeanor counts of assault with a firearm after he pointed a handgun at Black Lives Matter organizers outside the couple's home.

The charges were filed Monday by the California attorney general's office, more than five months after the March 2 confrontation.

"I will shoot you," David Lacey can be heard saying in video of the incident. "Get off of my porch."

I’m front of DA Jackie Lacey’s house for that community meeting she promised with the @BLMLA crew. Rang her bell to invite her. Her husband pulled a gun, cocked it, pointed it at my chest and said “I’ll shoot you. I don’t care who you are.” @WP4BL @RealJusticePAC @shaunking

David Lacey's attorney, Samuel E. Tyre, said his client's "instinct is forever and always to protect his wife and his family and to keep them safe from physical harm."

"My client and I are disappointed that the Attorney General's Office felt that the conduct at issue amounted to criminal behavior," Tyre told BuzzFeed News in an email. "We disagree entirely with their assessment, but we have the utmost faith in the justice system, and we are confident that the correct result will be reached."

In video of the incident, organizers can be heard asking David Lacey if he could tell his wife that they were there to meet with her, referencing a previous comment from her for a community meeting.

"I don't care who you are," David Lacey responds. "We're calling the police right now."

In a statement, Jackie Lacey told BuzzFeed News the incident had "caused my family immense pain."

"My husband acted in fear for my safety after we were subjected to months of harassment that included a death threat no less than a week earlier," she said. "Protesters arrived at my house shortly after 5 am while I was upstairs. My husband felt that we were in danger and acted out of genuine concern for our well being."

Shortly after the incident was reported, Jackie Lacey had said the couple were asleep when they heard noises outside their home. She called police while her husband walked downstairs to investigate, she said.

But protest organizers said they were the ones traumatized by the confrontation.

Melina Abdullah, one of the organizers named in the complaint as a victim, told BuzzFeed News this was the second time protesters had tried to reach Lacey at her home. The first time, she said, someone inside the home turned on the front lawn sprinklers.

"They were not afraid of us, they were agitated by our presence," she said. "If anyone should be in fear it should be us, not her husband. If they were really in fear, what would anyone in fear really do? Stay in the house and call the police, but instead he chose to open the door and point a gun."

Abdullah said organizers had been attending events where Lacey was expected to be and rang her door at about 5:48 a.m. because they believed the district attorney was expected to be at an early fundraiser that day.

Jackie Lacey, who has been criticized for not prosecuting use-of-force cases involving police officers, is currently campaigning for a third term as prosecutor.

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