The Bexar County DA’s Saga

Da Gonzales 2

As the truth emerges regarding the George Soros-funded Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales and his office’s relationship with the leftist group Texas Organizing Project (TOP) and The Wren Collective, a leftist social justice legal organization, his anti-police and soft-on-crime bias is becoming evident. Gonzales and his office have been on a scalp hunt for police officers while releasing repeat offenders and dangerous criminals.

These news reports have shown there is a clear connection between the “defund the police” movement (police reforms) and efforts to research how to punish law enforcement officers.

On Wednesday, Feb. 7, local news reported that nearly 30% of the Bexar County defendants bonded out by the leftist Saul Alinsky group “Texas Organizing Project” (TOP) as part of its bail program were later taken back into custody in the same case. The records show that other defendants bailed out by TOP were later accused in more serious criminal cases.

On Thursday, Feb. 15, WOAI TV news reported that Gonzales has been working closely with TOP to bond defendants to another criminal justice reform group called the Wren Collective. The leftist Wren Collective denies receiving any funding from organizations backed by billionaire George Soros.

However, records show that Soros’s “Open Society Foundations” has given millions of dollars in grants to a California non-profit called “Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs” (SEE), and SEE is a “fiscal sponsor” of the Wren Collective. SEE lists Wren as one of its projects, but Wren Collective’s founder, Jessica Brand, says none of the Soros funding was passed on to her group.

On Thursday, Feb. 15, local San Antonio news revealed hundreds of pages of text message communications between D.A. Gonzales, first assistant Christian Henricksen, and Jessica Brand, the founder of The Wren Collective, the leftist Austin-based criminal justice reform group. Immediately, Gonzales’ office asked the Texas attorney general to allow it to withhold all communications between him, his first assistant, and a Washington, D.C. law firm recommended to Gonzales by Brand.

Furthermore, the records show that Gonzales’ office and The Wren Collective discussed several high-profile cases, including those involving San Antonio police officers, like the October 2022 shooting of Erik Cantu. Police officers are Gonzales’ main target with the help of the leftist social justice/justice reform groups.

On Wednesday, Feb. 21, Precinct 3 Commissioner Grant Moody asked D.A. Gonzales about his relationship with The Wren Collective and whether the group influenced criminal charges in Bexar County.

Gonzales denied involvement. He claimed that “nobody makes decisions” outside his office. He asserted that no one “has any influence other than having had some messaging recommendations.”

On Friday, Feb. 23, D.A. Joe Gonzales asked a judge to quash a subpoena requiring him to turn over all communications between his office and The Wren Collective. However, is Gonzales trying to hide something?

This motion relates to the case of former San Antonio police officer James Brennand, who shot Erik Cantu in 2021 while he was in a McDonald’s parking lot. On Feb. 15, KSAT found that Gonzales’ office and The Wren Collective discussed several high-profile cases, including those involving San Antonio police officers, like the October 2022 shooting of Erik Cantu.

The subpoena was issued days after KSAT reported on the DA’s relationship with The Wren Collective. KSAT received a copy of the DA’s motion in which Gonzales said Brennand’s legal team is using this as a “fishing expedition” to generate unwanted media attention.

On Friday, Feb. 23, the attorneys for three former San Antonio police officers accused of committing crimes while on duty turned the tables and accused D.A. Gonzales’ Office Civil Rights Division of intentionally concealing evidence that would have set their clients free.

The motions, filed this month in the criminal cases against ex-SAPD officers Carlos Castro and Oscar Cruz Jr., asked the judge in each case to bar the state from retrying them. They claim the D.A.’s prosecutors demonstrated “intentional misconduct” during each trial.

The head of the DA’s Civil Rights Division, Daryl Harris, defended his handling of the cases in an interview with KSAT earlier this month. However, the D.A.’s relationship with The Wren Collective and the TOP, both leftist, anti-police organizations, seems to show collusion in prosecuting police officers for political purposes.

On Sunday, Feb. 24, as D.A. Gonzales faced backlash following a rash of shootings involving police last summer, he began a collaboration between his office, SAPD, and city and county leaders. He said his office is starting to chip away at a backlog of felony cases that have built up ever since the pandemic.

He said a plan they implemented in November 2023 had been a success, trimming the backlog by 11 percent. Gonzales said 45 of his prosecutors work after hours and on weekends to address 6,330 backlogged cases.

However, questions remain about how many of these cases are dismissed without punishing criminals and whether this is Gonzales’ public relations effort to save himself politically.

Democrat Bexar County Judge William Sakai and former Democrat Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff have supported Gonzales.

The fact is that Democrat Bexar County District Attorney Joe Gonzales is part of a leftist political movement that is soft on criminals because they are viewed as “victims” of a biased justice system but views police officers as “enforcers” of that system and thus they must be punished. However, a D.A. must protect the public’s safety first and not play politics with the law. D.A. Joe Gonzales has played politics, and he should be removed.