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CALIFORNIA CORRUPTION: State Senator Rod Wright Convicted of Voter Fraud, Perjury

California State Senator Rod Wright has been found guilty on corruption charges, and now faces more than eight years in jail.

California State Senator Rod Wright has been found guilty on corruption charges, and now faces more than eight years in jail.

 By Brian Hews

California State Senator Roderick Wright has been found guilty of living outside his Inglewood district when he successfully ran for his state seat in 2008.

Wright was found guilty by a Los Angeles County Superior Court jury who deliberated less than two days before finding the Senator guilty of eight counts, including two counts of perjury, one count of filing a false declaration of candidacy and five counts of fraudulent voting in elections in 2008 and 2009, all felonies.

The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorneys Bjorn Dodd and Michele Gilmer with the Public Integrity Division prosecuted and the case was quickly hailed by their boss District Attorney Jackie Lacey.

The case centered on evidence obtained by the District Attorney’s office that Wright on Feb. 13, 2008, declared his intent to become the Democratic candidate for the 25th Senate District, claiming that he lived in one of the units at 868 Glenway Drive, a five-unit complex that he owns in Inglewood.

Dodd and Gilmer claimed that Wright lived at the same address when he registered to vote in 2007.

Wright, who previously served in the state Assembly, was elected to the state senate on Nov. 4, 2008. Lacey and her team of prosecutors argued that Wright intentionally “misled voters in the 25th Senate district because his true residence was his Baldwin Hills home, which is in the 26th district.”

A Grand Jury indicted Wright on eight felony counts in September 2010.

Wright returns to court on March 12 before Superior Court Judge Kathleen Kennedy for sentencing. He faces up to eight years, four months in state prison. He also would be barred for life from holding any elected office.

Wright was elected to the California State Senate in 2008, representing what was then the 25th District and was re-elected in 2012 to the 35th District, which includes the communities of Alondra Park, Carson, Compton, East Carson, East Compton, Gardena, Harbor City, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Lawndale, Lennox, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Palos Verdes Peninsula, Rancho Dominguez, San Pedro, Torrance, Watts, West Athens, West Carson, West Compton, Willowbrook and Wilmington.

Wright is considered to be one of the most powerful politicians in Sacramento as well as in South Los Angeles.  The Democrat was appointed to Chair the Governmental Organization Committee, which oversees horseracing, public gaming, the National Guard, alcoholic beverages, and management of public safety emergencies and disaster response, and legislation permitting the use of state-controlled lands.

Previously, Wright served three terms in the California State Assembly representing the 48th Assembly District and from 1996 until 2002, he served as Chair of the Assembly Committee on Utilities and Commerce (U&C) which held legislative jurisdiction over electricity, natural gas, telecommunications, private water corporations and other issues related to commerce. He has been recognized for his work in the areas of public safety, education, energy and utilities, small business, family law and consumer privacy.

Wright did not make a public statement about his conviction and his official California State Senate website did not mention anything about his conviction.

  • Lynwood Resident says:

    Leticia Vasquez has live down the street from Senator Wright in Baldwin Hills for years! For about six years she’s lived with her fiancee Ron Wilson at 3622 Northland Dr. LA 90008 which is not in her Central Basin service area. She runs using her brother’s Lynwood-hood address of 3817 Walnut Ave. where she has a small room that she uses as an office. No neighbors would ever say she’s lived there in over a decade.

    So why hasn’t the District Attorney gone after her?

    Cooley started and opened the Rod Wright case and he’s white. Enough said!