Story updated in the afternoon
Superior Court judge Kathleen Kennedy dismissed the DA's two-year-old perjury and voter fraud case against City Councilman Richard Alarcon and his wife, Flora Montes de Oca Alarcon, saying the prosecution failed to present evidence to the grand jury that undercut its case. Prosecutors indicated they would refile the charges. "The case is not over in our mind by any stretch," said Deputy Dist. Atty. Jennifer Lentz. The Alarcons were indicted in 2010 after questions were raised about where they lived — in the Panorama City home in his city council district that he put on his official forms, or the Sun Valley home she owns that is not in the district. The councilman's claim that he lived in the Nordhoff Street house was complicated by revelations that a squatter had moved in and changed the locks. Alarcon has said he was innocent of the charges. the Meanwhile, the Alarcons have moved to Mission Hills — where he is running to go back to the state Assembly.
Councilman Alarcon's office released a statement:
My wife and I are obviously very pleased with the Judge's ruling today. We have maintained our innocence throughout this process and have always believed that when all of the evidence is considered, we would be found innocent.
Afternoon update: The DA refiled charges against both Alarcons. "Judge Kathleen Kennedy’s decision today to dismiss the Alarcon case is inexplicable,” District Attorney Steve Cooley said in a statement. “We will vigorously prosecute this case."
The new complaint "charges him with two felony counts of filing a false declaration of candidacy on Dec. 6, 2006 and again on Nov. 6, 2008. He is charged with seven counts of voter fraud involving elections in 2007, 2008 and 2009. He is charged with nine counts of perjury, including three for allegedly filing false driver’s license applications," the DA's release says. "Flora Montes de Oca Alarcon is charged with three counts of perjury for allegedly claiming that she lived at the Nordhoff address on a Provisional Voting Ballot, in registering to vote and on a driver’s license application. She also is charged with three counts of voter fraud."
Photo: Michael Owen Baker/Daily News