Left-wing Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gasćon isn’t making any new friends on the comedy circuit after his latest decision to let yet another ‘allegedly’ felonious act go unpunished as such.
The DA has refused to charge the suspect who attacked comic Dave Chapelle onstage at the Hollywood Bowl earlier this week despite the fact that he was armed with a knife.
Instead, Gasćon kicked the case to the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office for consideration of misdemeanor charges, a decision that has outraged comics and comedy club owners and managers, Fox News reported.
“After reviewing the evidence, prosecutors determined that while criminal conduct occurred, the evidence as presented did not constitute felony conduct,” a spokesperson for the department said in a statement provided to The Hollywood Reporter. “The District Attorney’s Office does not prosecute misdemeanor crimes within the city of Los Angeles.”
Police say the man, 23-year-old Isaiah Lee, had a replica gun with a real knife inside.
What’s more, club owners and some comedians are now concerned that by allowing this armed thug to get off with a far lighter sentence for attacking Chappelle, that will only lead to more attacks against comics and entertainers.
“This is shocking to hear,” New York comedy club owner Dani Zoldan told Fox News Digital Thursday. “The individual that attacked Dave Chappelle did so with a knife. It was planned in advance. I’m curious what they would consider felony conduct. People should be held accountable for their actions. Not charging this person appropriately sends a message that it’s OK to physically harm someone. It’s really outrageous.
“Will Smith got an Oscar after he slapped Chris Rock and now this. L.A. is awesome, and residents deserve to live there violence-free. Politicians and police need to do their job right,” Zoldan said.
We’d argue about the ‘awesomeness’ of L.A., the crime-ridden homeless capital of the world, but the club owner is right in his expectation of Gasćon doing the job he was elected to do (wonder if Zoldan voted for Gasćon, and if so, if he will again).
Fox News adds that one comedian has a different perspective on the outcome:
Actor Kevin Hart appeared on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” Thursday and said the swift security response to the Chappelle ambush, which left the suspect seriously injured, may have audience members thinking twice about rushing the stage.
“Somebody getting their a– whipped sends a message out to other people that was like, ‘You know, I was thinking about doing that, but seeing that, I don’t really want to do that,'” Hart said.
Jamie Masada, owner of the LA-based Laugh Factory chain of comedy clubs, also shared his disappointment with the DA’s decision not to file felony charges against Lee.
“It is so unjust. I don’t know about the law, but I do know what’s right. And, from my perspective, that was a felony, not a misdemeanor,” Masada said. “It is just not right.”
Fox News added: “LA City Attorney Mike Feuer hit Lee with four misdemeanor crimes which include battery, possession of a weapon with intent to assault, unauthorized access to the stage area during a performance, and commission of an act that delays the event or interferes with the performer.”
The only people who can change the lunacy of George Gasćon are voters in L.A. County. But that might require them to chose someone who doesn’t have a “D” behind their name.