COMPTON — City Councilman Isaac Galvan was arrested Aug. 13 for allegedly rigging the recent city election and attempting to bribe an election official. Galvan was reelected to the District 2 seat in the June 1 election by one vote, 855-854, against challenger Andre Spicer.
Mayor Emma Sharif released a statement on the matter, but made no indication of any actions the council would take against Galvan.
“While we do not have all of the details regarding the charges brought against Councilman Galvan, the city takes any chargers of elections fraud extremely seriously,” Sharif said.
Along with Galvan, former Compton candidate Jace Dawson, Kimberly Chaouch, Toni Morris, Barry Reed and Reginald Streeter were charged with conspiracy to commit election fraud.
Galvan also is charged with bribing a county election official, a charge he denied.
“I have never bribed anyone, nor attempted to bribe anyone,” Galvan said.
He declined to elaborate further.
According to the criminal complaint, Galvan and Dawson, who ran for the District 2 seat in the April primary and finished fifth in a five-person race, worked together to secure votes to ensure Galvan would retain his District 2 seat.
Following the primary April 20, Galvan reached out to Dawson about working on his campaign in exchange for a possible appointment to the Compton Taxpayers Committee. Dawson was appointed to the committee May 25 on a 3-1 vote by the City Council.
Galvan and Dawson were arrested Aug. 13 by members of the district attorney’s bureau of investigations and led into a downtown courtroom in handcuffs. Both men pleaded not guilty and were released on their own recognizance.
2UrbanGirls spoke to several Compton elected officials who all proclaimed Galvan “innocent until proven guilty,” but declined to be identified for this article.
Galvan is still allowed to remain an active participant on the City Council where he was recently elected mayor pro tem. Galvan has given no indication he intends to resign from his seat.
Should Galvan be convicted and removed from the council, the city would have the option of holding a special election or appointing someone to the seat. Some people believe Spicer should be appointed to the seat.
Nina Childs, who hosts a podcast on Hub Radio Station, which is owned by Spicer, said: “Here’s to hoping the county and Compton City Council will do the right thing, and overturn this election and put the true and rightful winner, Andre Spicer, in that seat where he belongs.”
Childs recently aired a podcast that included two of the people charged along with Galvan and Dawson.
Galvan is currently in his third term of office. He became the first Latino elected to the Compton City Council in 2013 and is now the senior member of the body.
Galvan is due back in court for a hearing Sept. 17.
2 Urban Girls is a freelance reporter for Wave Newspapers who covers the Compton and Inglewood areas. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.