Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Wednesday, February 7, 2018


Page 1


Four Contests Develop for Superior Court Open Seats

Competing Are Vincent, Cole; Gibbons, Gilbertson; Hancock, Cho; Perez, Schonbrun


By a MetNews Staff Writer


The first contested races this year for Los Angeles Superior Court open seats were initiated yesterday as four candidates filed declarations of intent to run for offices already staked out by other contenders.

As of late yesterday afternoon:

Deputy Public Defender Holly L. Hancock filed papers to run for Office No. 60. Deputy District Attorney Tony J. Cho had previously signed up to run for that seat, now occupied by Judge Philip K. Mautino.

Deputy District Attorney Dennis P. Vincent filed for Office No. 67, and will be competing with former Los Angeles Deputy City Attorney Onica Valle Cole to succeed Judge Donna Goldstein.

Los Angeles Superior Court Commissioner Danielle R. A. Gibbons filed for Office No. 71 and will be up against Senior Deputy Los Angeles County Counsel Catana Rene Gilbertson. The seat is to be vacated by Judge Mark G. Nelson.

Deputy District Attorney Javier Perez will vie with Deputy City Attorney Matthew Schonbrun for No. 113, held by Judge Christine Ewell.

No Competition

A fifth candidate filed a declaration yesterday: Deputy District Attorney Wendy E. Segall, seeking Office No. 20, belonging to Judge Marc Marmaro. She presently has no competitor in that race.

There was only one candidate for each of the other three known open seats. The candidates and the office numbers are Deputy District Attorney Alfred Coletta, No. 4; Deputy Los Angeles City Attorney Patricia Ann Hunter, No. 16;  Sydne Jane Michel, senior deputy city prosecutor for the cities of Redondo Beach and Hermosa Beach, 146.

There might be two other open seats on the June 5 ballot. Neither Judge Robert J. Higa nor Judge Henry Barela had taken out a declaration of intent by late yesterday. Higa, on Feb. 1, said he hasn’t decided whether to seek a new term and Barela has not responded to inquiries.

Today at 5 p.m. is the deadline for filing declarations of intent. However, where an incumbent who is up for election does not file papers, there is a five-day extension during which additional candidates may file for the offices.

Repeat Candidates

Cole, Perez, and Schonbrun have previously run unsuccessfully. Two years ago, Vincent had taken out nominating papers in two races but then decided to enter neither contest, saying he did not “want to get in the middle of a D.A. fight,” given that other prosecutors from his office were in those races.

Expected to become candidates are Assistant U.S. Attorney David DeJute of the Central District of California, represented by Cerrell Associates, Inc.; Deputy District Attorney David Berger, and private practitioner Michael Ribons, being advised by David Gould; and attorney David Diamond, who has retained Fred Huebscher.

One incumbent is being challenged. Veteran Judge Malcolm Mackey, who holds Office No. 63, has drawn as a competitor Woodland Hills employment lawyer Tony Lewis.


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