The legal conundrum over LA’s District 10 council seat has gotten messier for the city. On Tuesday, a judge ruled that interim councilman Herb Wesson cannot carry out the duties of his office, which include voting on legislation.
Shortly after winning the District 10 seat in 2020, Mark Ridley-Thomas was indicted in a bribery case involving his son and the University of Southern California. The council appointed Wesson as his replacement pending the outcome of the criminal case.
Representatives of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Southern California sued. They point out that Wesson already served three terms on the council previously, making him eligible to serve again.
Superior Court Judge Mary H. Strobel sided with the plaintiffs Tuesday and indicated they were likely to prevail in court. Her ruling doesn’t mean that Wesson must step down, but it does bar him from carrying out the duties of a council member.
It’s not clear what step the council will take next. The plaintiffs would like to see Ridley-Thomas reinstated since he has not yet been convicted of a crime. Judge Strobel made clear that she is not opposed to a temporary appointment, but it can’t be someone who has already exceeded term limits on the council.