Questions were raised on District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis’ conduct regarding her prosecution of former City Councilman Steve Casteneda, client of Attorney Marc X. Carlos. The chief prosecutor in the investigations says a phone call by Bonnie Dumanis to the then mayor of Chula Vista should have been disclosed and the District Attorney’s Office should have recused itself from the prosecution.
Marc comments in the KPBS article and radio show:
O’Toole is supporting former federal prosecutor Bob Brewer in his bid to unseat Dumanis.
O’Toole said had he known about the call, at the very least he would have recommended that Castaneda’s lawyer, Marc Carlos, be told of the conflict of interest. But O’Toole did not address in his written statement why he himself didn’t tell Carlos about the call once Padilla confirmed it. He declined to answer that question, saying he would not go beyond what he had put in his statement already.
Carlos first learned of Dumanis’ 2005 call from KPBS recently.
“If she was trying to do something to get a political favorite in a position of power at the expense of my client, it clearly shows a vexatious prosecution,” Carlos said. “It’s illegal for one. And it’s unethical. It’s certainly something I needed to know.”
Former federal prosecutor Forge agreed. He said at a minimum, the defense should have been informed of Dumanis’ call to Padilla.