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With DA Decision Released, Two Investigations Yet To Be Completed In Stephon Clark Shooting

Rich Pedroncelli / AP Photo

Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn, center, flanked by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, second from left, and Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg Tuesday, March 27, 2018, in Sacramento, Calif.

Rich Pedroncelli / AP Photo

While the results of the Sacramento County district attorney's investigation into the death of Stephon Clark were released Saturday, two other reviews of the case have yet to be delivered.

The California attorney general's office has been conducting what it has called a "parallel investigation" to the one the DA just completed. Sacramento County District Attorney Anne-Marie Schubert announced Saturday no criminal charges would be filed against the two officers who shot and killed Clark last March, identified as Terrence Mercadal and Jared Robinet.

Attorney General Xavier Becerra said his office is not investigating Schubert's determination that the officers' actions were within the letter of the law.

"We are not reviewing what the DA did," Becerra said. "We are doing our own examination of the record and the evidence wholly separate and apart and independently of the DA's office."

When the AG finishes that process, he will release a report with an opinion as to whether the two officers followed the law.

At a news conference Monday, Becerra said there have been "many instances" where an attorney general charged a person with a crime even though the local district attorney did not, but gave no hint if this would be one of those times.

Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn said his office and internal affairs will make a decision about the officers' actions and employment once the AG concludes his work.

“We get their results and their review and then we take that into consideration as part of our final review. So, that's the only step left in our internal review,” Hahn said on Insight With Beth Ruyak Monday.

Hahn said all disciplinary actions will go through him. Both officers are still employed by the department.

"My decisions will be based on our policy and the law and what their actions were and whether I believe they were within that policy or not," Hahn said. "And no amount of somebody calling for their termination will change that."

He said police policy is often more strict than what the law covers, so the department's outcome could be different than what the DA's office concluded. In the event Hahn decides to terminate the officers, he would send that request to City Manager Howard Chan, who would have the final say.

"Everything except for termination is me, I implement that,” Hahn said. "And even termination, I recommend that to the city manager."

As for calls for policy changes by people protesting the shooting and Schubert’s decision, Hahn said the department has already made changes to its foot-pursuit and body camera policies, but has more to do.

"We have numerous recommendations from the Department of Justice that we will continue to post on our website as we move forward with each one of the recommendations that we haven't already implemented or moved forward on," Hahn said.

The Stanford University Center For Policing Equity is also working with the department to review its policies.

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