Bay Area/ Oakland/ Politics & Govt
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Published on February 16, 2024
Oakland DA Pamela Price Announces Leadership Reshuffles Across Alameda County CourtsSource: Google Street View

Oakland's DA office is shaking things up with a series of leadership appointments in what's seen as a continued push for change under District Attorney Pamela Price. In a move announced yesterday, Senior Assistant District Attorney James P. Meehan has been named the Interim Branch Head of the East County Hall of Justice.

Meehan, a longstanding figure in the DA's office with 38 years under his belt, takes over from Senior Assistant District Attorney Elgin Lowe, who is steered off to lead a high-profile murder case—the slaying of Oakland Police Officer Tuan Le. These are transitions of power within a framework built on legacies and lifetimes spent in public service, a transition that hails the old, even as it ushers in a the new.

Another key appointment features Catherine Horner Kobal taking the helm as Interim Branch Head of the Rene C. Davidson Courthouse. Kobal, not new to the halls of justice, has been with the DA's office since her graduation from law school in 1990 and has led the DA’s Law & Motion team for years. Her appointment keeps the judiciary in the family; her father celebrated as a respected judge in the county until 2018.

At the Wiley Manuel Courthouse, the baton has been passed to Senior Assistant District Attorney Jimmie Wilson who's tasked with spearheading the district attorney’s partnership with Oakland’s Gun Violence Reduction Program. Despite running unsuccessfully for District Attorney in 2022, Wilson's career trajectory continues to arc upwards.

Alongside these shuffles, a roster of veteran prosecutors maintains continuity across Alameda County's justice apparatus. Senior Assistant District Attorney Casey Bates remains at the helm in Fremont, while the expertise of Evanthia Pappas in domestic violence cases continues to serve Oakland's families. The Community Support Bureau, yet another arm of the office's broad reach, will be guided by Esther Lemus, a fresh recruit from Sonoma County.

DA Price praised the reshuffle, stating, "The residents of Alameda County should know that these dedicated and longtime public servants are proud to serve our County and have been instrumental in our successful transition over the past year." Her words, snagged from the DA's official announcement, echo the sentiments of renewal and steadfast dedication to public service.