Santa Clara County Sheriff’s candidate convicted of perjury

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

CUPERTINO, Calif. – A jury this week convicted a former candidate for Santa Clara County Sheriff of felony perjury, for falsely certifying that she had the required experience to run for the elected law enforcement job, the District Attorney’s Office announced on Thursday.

California law requires that candidates for sheriff have at least one year of law enforcement experience within the last five years or a certificate showing advanced training in law enforcement. 

Anh Colton, 51, of Cupertino, had neither.

Efforts to reach Colton on Thursday were not immediately successful. 

Questions were raised about Colton’s experience shortly after she participated in a candidate forum hosted in late March by the Silicon Valley Public Accountability Foundation, San Jose Spotlight reported.

According to a statement from the DA, the office sent an investigator to Colton’s home in April. Colton referred the DA to her campaign advisor, who allegedly told the office to stay away from the candidate.

Colton did not respond to the Spotlight’s requests for comment at the time. 

Based on her false certification, Colton was listed on the primary ballot and received more than 4% of the vote, but not enough to have materially changed the outcome.

“Certifying falsely under penalty of perjury is a serious matter, and in an election a case such as this one could prevent a legitimate candidate from making the runoff or even winning outright,” District Attorney Jeff Rosen said in a statement.

Colton was sentenced shortly after the verdict to the time she had already spent in jail for this offense, which totaled 134 days.

The District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigations began looking at Colton’s qualifications before the primary election in 2022. 

By the time the investigation was able to definitively determine that Colton did not meet the statutory requirements, the ballots with her name on them had already been mailed out.

Bob Jonsen won the election to be sheriff, after the embattled, longtime sheriff Laurie Smith declined to run for a seventh term in office ahead of the June 7 race in 2022.

 

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About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.

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