John Hamasaki to run against Brooke Jenkins in San Francisco DA race

Former San Francisco police commissioner John Hamasaki plans to run for district attorney in the fall special election, where he will face off against interim D.A. Brooke Jenkins.

The Asian-American criminal defense attorney confirmed to KTVU that he has pulled the paperwork to run for district attorney in the election on November 8.

Jenkins, who was appointed to the position by the mayor last month, already filed her candidacy for the seat. 

On Friday, flanked by supporters and family, Hamasaki made the announcement official. 

"I’m here today because San Francisco needs an independent District Attorney who will hold everyone accountable to the law," said Hamasaki. "Whether you are a drug dealer selling deadly fentanyl in the Tenderloin, a multi-million corporation exploiting workers and small business owners, or a political machine selling influence in City Hall, I will fight for safety and justice."

In a news release, the candidate said he considers restoring integrity to the D.A.'s office a priority. His bullet-point list also mentions protecting the community whether the case is a car break-in, violent crime, or wage theft. He said vulnerable victims such as Asian elders and domestic violence victims would be a priority. He would also invest in "culturally competent" victim services. 

Finally, he reiterated an allusion to setting his sights on City Hall by partnering with local and federal agencies to investigate and prosecute corruption at City Hall.

According to a press release, Hamasaki is a fourth-generation Japanese American and has lived with his family in North Beach for nearly three decades. If elected, Hamasaki would be San Francisco’s first Japanese American District Attorney.

Hamasaki's decision comes after ousted District Attorney Chesa Boudin announced last week that he would not seek reelection, choosing to focus on his family. 

SEE ALSO: San Francisco DA Brooke Jenkins paid $100K during recall effort: reports

Meanwhile, Boudin is calling for an ethics investigation into Jenkins. His replacement was the face of the movement to recall Boudin. Recent finance filings reveal that Jenkins was paid $100,000 as a consultant by a group linked to the effort to recall Boudin while she also worked as a volunteer to unseat him. A political analyst told KTVU that was not illegal, but that Jenkins should have disclosed the payment. 

Boudin said in a statement, "I'm asking you to join me in calling on the SF Ethics Commission to investigate the ties between Jenkins, people in her administration, and the recall effort and demand full disclosure of the funds paid and received to them during the campaign."