PALMDALE – No criminal charges have been filed against Palmdale Mayor Jim Ledford, the mayor is cooperating with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, and the mayor is confident that he will be cleared of all accusations when the inquiry is concluded. This according to a statement released Thursday by Ledford’s attorney, Anthony J. Falangetti.
Read the full statement below or view it here:
“Based on recent activity by investigators of the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, it appears that they are conducting an investigation that in some way involves Mayor James Ledford. To our knowledge at this time, no criminal charges have been filed. Mayor Ledford has always been transparent and cooperative regarding any inquiries into his employment or his position as Mayor. He has cooperated with the District Attorney’s Office and he will continue to cooperate with the review of any documents or materials they seek.
Mayor Ledford is innocent of any alleged misconduct or criminal charges. We are confident that when the District Attorney’s inquiry is concluded, he will be cleared of all accusations.
The Mayor has faithfully served his community for over 30 years. Under his leadership, Palmdale continues to grow and flourish. With the aerospace industry as the foundation of economic growth and job creation, the city attracts businesses of all types to support a growing middle class population. By every statistically measure, Palmdale excels under the Mayor’s leadership. This has been reaffirmed time and time again by the voters’ overwhelming support for the Mayor in the polling booth for 13 terms.
The presumption of innocence is the hallmark of the American justice system. We hope that public and the press will honor this sacred and fundamental principle. We request you responsibly reserve judgment until the investigation is completed and any court proceedings are concluded.”
The statement comes a week after investigators with the District Attorney’s Office searched Ledford’s City Hall office and his home.
The nature of the investigation remains a mystery. However, Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris, an attorney who represented a Palmdale man who sued the city over election districting in 2013, told CBS2 that he thinks a deposition given by Ledford in that case might explain the DA’s investigation.
“He testified that he was getting $60,000 a year, that he was supposedly working by the hour, but he did no work for it. That is a gift,” Parris alleged to CBS2 last week.
Palmdale City Councilman Austin Bishop has called on Ledford to take a voluntary leave of absence pending the completion of the investigation.
“While we still don’t know a lot and we want to ensure an open and fair process for anyone under investigation, as public officials we hold ourselves to a higher standard,” Bishop said last week.
Ledford, 63, was elected to his 13th two-year term as Palmdale’s mayor last November. The city does not have term limits.
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