OAKLAND, Calif. - Alameda County District Attorney Pamela Price faces new criticism because she hired her boyfriend to work in the office.
Antwon Cloird was hired to serve as a senior program specialist, a position that pays a six-figure salary, despite being accused of extorting business owners in Richmond for tens of thousands of dollars, according to the East Bay Times, which first reported on his questionable hiring.
County officials told the East Bay Times that they could not find documentation of Price disclosing Cloird was her boyfriend.
Alameda County does not have a detailed policy on officials hiring their friends and families.
However, Price's former spokesperson advised her not to hire Cloird.
"I begged not for it to happen, only from a communications standpoint," Ryan LaLonde, told the East Bay Times.
The Alameda County DA's office did not return a request for comment.
Alameda County has faced criticisms for nepotism and other ethical dilemmas dating back 10 years.
A 2013 civil grand jury report investigated claims that former Board of Supervisors members hired family members and helped them win county contracts. The civil grand jury was unable to substantiate those claims, but recommended an anti-nepotism policy to be enacted.
A 2018 civil grand jury report also found issues with how county officials handled free luxury-suite tickets at the Oakland Coliseum.
The most recent civil grand jury report found, "Alameda County has no ethics policy or code of conduct that applies to all county officials, employees, vendors and volunteers."
"The potential for ethical misconduct in a county as large as Alameda County is great and ethical dilemmas can arise in every department at all levels of employment," the report states.
Former Alameda County DA Nancy O'Malley hired her sister to also serve as a senior program specialist for the Alameda County DA's Office. O'Malley's nephew also worked as a prosecutor and served under Price as well.
The recent civil grand jury report also found that O'Malley's staff improperly used their office computers and emails for campaign work.
"The analysis by the Grand Jury of the email cache of messages to and from staff in the District Attorney’s Office reveals that more than 25 staff members used County owned computers and the County owned and operated email system to solicit funds for a District Attorney candidate, sometimes in coordination with police officer unions in other cities and counties, to request attendance at campaign events, and to discuss campaign strategy during the 2018 campaign for District Attorney," the report states.
Cloird, Price's boyfriend, previously worked as a community activist in Richmond before joining the DA's office. He advocated for policies to bring down community violence and wanted to see more opportunities for people to stay off the streets and away from crime.
"We have to come with new ideas and new concepts on how to address the violence in this community," Cloird told KTVU in 2022.
In 2015, Cloird was involved in an alleged extortion scandal that involved him offering businesses in Richmond an expedited permitting process in exchange for money, which was referred to an FBI agent, the East Bay Times reported.