A transgender woman who reportedly sexually assaulted a 10-year-old girl in a California bathroom could end up serving little to no time under Los Angeles County's criminal justice reform policies, infuriating area residents.
What are the details?
A transgender woman charged with throttling and sexually assaulting the child in a public bathroom may serve very little — if any — time in connection with the 2014 attack.
Under Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon's policy of refusing to prosecute juvenile offenders as adults, Hanna Tubbs would see just probation or a short time spent in juvenile hall.
Tubbs — a 26-year-old transgender woman formerly known as James Tubbs — was nearly 18 when she was said to have sexually assaulted an unnamed 10-year-old child in a Palmdale Denny's bathroom in 2014.
Tubbs was accused of grabbing the 10-year-old girl by the throat while the two were in the bathroom. She then reportedly locked the two of them inside a stall, shoved her hand down the child's pants, and penetrated her.
Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney John McKinney reported, "The assault went on until someone walked into the restroom and scared him off. He fled from the restaurant, and he went unidentified for several years until a cold DNA hit identified him as someone who was arrested in the state of Idaho."
According to McKinney, Tubbs has been charged with a variety of other offenses across several states following the 2014 assault, including multiple assaults with deadly weapons, probation violations, and drug possessions.
Tubbs has pleaded guilty to the sexual assault but will not have to register as a sex offender, as the case will not be prosecuted in adult court.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office Special Victims Unit Lt. Richard Ruiz said he and the rest of his department are furious over the progressive DA's handling of the case and others like it.
“I would ask the public to reach out to Mr. Gascon and express their concerns and their outrage on a matter such as this involving a sexual predator,” Ruiz said according to KTTV-TV. “The public should be concerned. This is a heinous crime.”
McKinney added, "What is happening is our district attorney is ushering him right out the door, back onto the streets of this county and God knows where else he might roam. It’s madness. It makes a mockery of our criminal justice system.”
Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger said that Gascon's ineptitude in prosecuting those who deserve it forces the child victim to bear "the burden of a lifetime of trauma.
"It's useless to catch criminals like [Tubbs] if we don't follow through and seek justice for victims such as the 10-year-old girl [she] sexually assaulted," Barger reasoned.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office said that the defendant "entered an open plea to the court, leaving it up to the judge to decide what the sentence should be. Our office is seeking that he be placed in a custodial setting in a sheriff’s facility for two years."
The station reported that the spokesperson did not answer a question inquiring why the case would not be transferred to adult court.
"The DA is trying to distance himself from this result and lay blame on the judge when in fact, it's only happened because of his policy against transferring juvenile cases to adult court," McKinney reasoned. "Two years is a pathetic outcome for man who is a career criminal with felony convictions in multiple states and who committed forcible sexual assault on a 10-year-old girl in a Denny's bathroom."
Gascon, according to a report from the Los Angeles Times, has expressed concerns that Tubbs could be victimized if incarcerated in an adult prison due to transgender status.