Contra Costa County District Attorney's dismissal looms

MARTINEZ, Calif. (KGO) -- A civil grand jury has recommended that a California county's district attorney be removed from his position because of corruption.

The grand juror findings released Thursday accuse Contra Costa District Attorney Mark A. Peterson of "willful or corrupt misconduct in office" and call for his ousting.

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Peterson had admitted to having spent more than $66,000 in campaign funds on movie tickets, clothes and other personal expenses from 2011-15 while he had been serving as treasurer of his re-election campaign.

"It's all well and good to apologize, but obviously the repercussions continue," said Aron Deferrar, the President of the Contra Costa County Deputy DA's Association.

"His leadership is not inspiring confidence in our office and he has done things that are deeply, deeply disturbing," said Deferrar.

Prosecutors in Contra Costa County held an emergency meeting Friday and unanimously for "no confidence" in Peterson.

Foreperson, Jim Mellander, says he and The Grand Jury did a lot of research before accusing the Contra Costa County District Attorney.

"This is based on that there's enough evidence, that it should be brought to trial," said Mellander.

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The grand jury's accusation will be delivered to a Contra Costa Superior Court judge, who would either appoint a prosecuting officer or turn the matter over to a district attorney in an adjoining county.

The matter could result in a jury trial to decide on the findings.

If convicted, Peterson would not face a criminal penalty but would be removed from office

Peterson did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The Associate Press contributed to this post. null
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