Sacramento County District Attorney Thien Ho is suing the city government in an attempt to require local officials to “enforce laws around sidewalk obstruction and get people off the streets and into professionally-managed camping sites,” according to a recent Wall Street Journal story.
“Living on the streets is not compassionate for the unhoused or the housed,” Ho said in a press conference this week.
“We are giving a voice to those that feel as if their cries for help have fallen on deaf ears,” Ho added about his lawsuit, which has received criticism from Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg.
Steinberg claimed that residents of Sacramento, homeless or otherwise, would not benefit from Ho’s lawsuit. “The frustration that members of our community feel is absolutely justified,” he told the Wall Street Journal. “But the DA’s lawsuit will not clear a single sidewalk nor get a single person off the streets.”
Steinberg also called Ho’s lawsuit a “performative distraction,” per KCRA.
Ho responded directly to Steinberg’s claims in an interview with KCRA on Tuesday. “Frankly,” Ho said, “the city has had seven years to deal with our unhoused crisis, and frankly, in those seven years our homeless crisis has increased by 250%. Now is the time to act. I believe that the response as well was that they’ve been working day and night to enforce the law,” he said of Steinberg’s defense of his leadership. “I would respectfully disagree with that.”
“They are simply not enforcing the law,” Ho said. “And that’s what I’m asking them to do: to enforce the law, to keep our cities clean and safe.”
Ho explained that the city has not “prosecuted any single case” in an “entire year,” which made him question whether the city had a mandate “not to enforce the law.”
The District Attorney said that the lawsuit will get answers to why City Hall has not been enforcing the law in Sacramento.
“The city claims that they’re getting voluntary compliance [from the homeless],” Ho said. “If you believe that there is voluntary compliance, I encourage you right now to walk down on C Street, on Alhambra, on Bannon, on Commerce, on Auburn Boulevard in the middle of the night, barefoot and alone, and you tell me whether or not there is voluntary compliance.”
“Homelessness is the top issue for voters in California, a Quinnipiac University poll found earlier this year,” according to the Wall Street Journal report.
DA Ho and Steinberg did not respond to a request for comment from Fox News Digital.
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