Los Angeles County officials have until Aug. 17 to determine how many of the 715,833 signatures submitted in the effort to recall Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón are valid.

Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk Dean Logan said his office has completed the first step in the review of the petitions, which were submitted Wednesday, and is now working on verifying the signatures.

At least 566,857 valid signatures are required to force a recall election.

“As authorized in the California Elections Code–11225–the RR/CC will use the random sampling technique for the verification of petition signatures. The random sample is 5 percent of the total number of signatures submitted,” Logan’s office said Saturday.

“Based on the random sampling results, the petition will be certified as sufficient, require verification of all signatures submitted, or certified as insufficient. … If the petition meets the sufficiency requirement, the RR/CC must certify sufficiency to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors at its next regular meeting.”

The earliest a recall election could be held would be at the same time as the Nov. 8 general election. If those conditions are not met, a special recall election would likely take place between late December 2022 and mid-January 2023, according to the Registrar’s Office.

Gascón has been under fire since taking office in December 2020, when he issued a series of directives critics  blasted as being soft on crime. The directives include a rule against seeking the death penalty, a ban on transferring juvenile defendants to adult court and prohibitions on filing sentencing-enhancements in most cases.

Gascón has repeatedly defended his policies, saying his stances were well-known during his campaign and his election signified public support of his agenda.

Recall organizers contend that residents “have spoken in a resounding way,” noting the sheer number of people who have signed petitions and pointing to 37 cities in the county that have taken “no-confidence” votes on Gascón.

“The sheer magnitude of this effort, and time and investment required to get to this point, show how strong the public desire is to remove George Gascón from office,” according to the campaign.

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