Michael A. Jacobs for
Orange County District Attorney
Michael A. Jacobs is a former Orange County Deputy District Attorney
with nearly 30 years of experience as a prosecutor.
During my career I worked in the Felony Panel and the Career Criminal, Sexual Assault, Narcotics/Special Assignments and Homicide units. I worked in the Homicide Unit for 13 years and supervised it for 3 years.
I also supervised the Felony Panel and Narcotics/Special Assignments units.
My experience as a prosecutor includes 141 jury trials, 75 were felonies of which 26 were homicides. During my career I prosecuted the first case where a driving under the influence case resulted in a second-degree murder conviction. I also prosecuted a serial sexual assault case where for the first time in Orange County DNA results were introduced into evidence.
Michael A. Jacobs will use his experience to ensure that the District Attorney’s Office is professional, ethical, and focused on the prosecution of criminal violations.
In 1996, I initiated a review of a series of sexual assault homicides that occurred in the late 1970s. The investigation led to the arrest of an ex-Marine, Gerald Parker and his conviction of six counts of murder. It also freed an innocent man who had been wrongly convicted of one of the offenses and had served 16 years in prison.
After Parker was in custody, I organized and obtained funding from the state for an unsolved homicide project named TRACKRS.
In 2001, I initiated the Orange County Innocence Project. It involved providing O.C.D.A forms to all of the state’s prison facilities for inmates who felt that they had been wrongly convicted.
From my experience in the Homicide Unit and time spent reviewing coroner’s unsolved homicide case files, I acquired an interest in working on those cases and felt that it should be a priority of the office. The result was the Parker Case and the TRACKRS project. Under the Spitzer regime, unsolved cases seem to be no priority at all and the TRACKRS project no longer exists.
I am not a politician. My work in the office was as a trial attorney. I spent 25 out of my 30 years in trial units. I enjoyed my work as a supervisor and still always carried a caseload. I felt this was essential if my role was to lead and advise experienced attorneys. I enjoyed working with other deputies and there were never any personal issues. The office needs to be rebuilt and restored to being the outstanding law firm it was prior to the reign of Rackauckas and Spitzer.
A number of the most enjoyable years of my career were spent supervising the Felony Panel and Homicide Unit. There was a cohesiveness and friendships that developed that are still lasting today. It was enjoyable coming to work every day and time passed quickly. The deputies worked together and helped one another. Many of the guilty verdicts obtained were truly the results of a diligent team effort.
The work of the District Attorney’s Office is critical to our system of justice. As former District Attorney, Cecil Hicks, used to point out, the power granted to us as deputies should be carefully and fairly applied. It should not be taken lightly and is a heavy responsibility. I was fortunate in my career to be supervised and trained by some of the best trial attorneys who ever worked in the office. It helped tremendously in my career. Today’s deputies should be afforded the same opportunity.
I’m the only candidate with the experience and background to accomplish the tasks detailed above. This is particularly necessary in order to face today’s atmosphere of increased criminal conduct and violence. If elected District Attorney, I will use my experience to ensure that the District Attorney’s Office is professional, ethical, and focused on the prosecution of criminal violations.