Alvin Bragg makes history as Manhattan's first ever Black district attorney
Alvin Bragg, a former New York state and federal prosecutor, has been elected Manhattan's first Black district attorney in the history of the office.
Bragg, a former federal prosecutor with the criminal division of the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York, defeated Republican Thomas Kenniff, a former prosecutor, JAG lawyer and Iraq war veteran.
Bragg spoke to supporters about what the historic win meant to him during a victory party in Harlem where he grew up.
"In addition to being the first Black district attorney, I think I'll probably be the first district attorney who's had police point a gun at him. I think I'll be the first district attorney who's had a homicide victim on his doorstop. I think I'll be the first district attorney in Manhattan whose had a semi-automatic weapon pointed at him. I think I'll be the first district attorney in Manhattan whose had a loved one reenter from incarceration and stay with him," Bragg said at a victory speech Tuesday night. "And I'm going to govern from that perspective."
When he won the heated democratic primary, Bragg said he was once a 15-year-old who was stopped "numerous times at gunpoint by police." Now, as the head of one of the most prominent prosecutor's offices in the nation, Bragg has said he is committed to ending racial disparities and mass incarceration, and campaigned on a promise not to prosecute certain low level crimes.
I just knew from that early age, there would be a better way to protect people's civil rights, and get a real sense of community based public safety," Bragg told CNN in February. "I know how to get to true public safety. And I can assure folks that arresting people for things that have absolutely nothing to do with public safety do not make it safer."
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