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Shawnee County District Attorney

District 3

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  • Mike Kagay
    (Rep)

  • Candidate picture

    Joshua Luttrell
    (Dem)

Biographical Information

What improvements are needed in Kansas open government laws (KORA and KOMA) to make governmental actions more understandable and decisions more transparent for all residents?

What community support services are needed to make the Immediate Intervention Program for juvenile offenders more successful and accessible? What is your proposal for ensuring availability of those community support services?

Over the past 10 years there has been a significant increase in deaths from firearms, including suicide. What policies would you propose to reduce deaths by firearms?

What is the role of the District Attorney’s office in reducing domestic violence in the county? How do you propose to carry out that role?

What is the biggest barrier to regional cooperation in reducing crime? How do you propose to reduce that barrier?

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Personal Biography I was born and raised in Topeka, KS in a single mother household with four wonderful sisters and an amazing brother. I attended Washburn University and Washburn Law and have been a practicing attorney for twelve years, with a focus on criminal defense. I've been actively engaged in social justice issues since I was a child, attending some of the first counter protests at Gage Park. I am married to my amazing wife, Carmen Anello, and have two wonderful children, Maxwell and Zoe.
Campaign Phone (785) 289-9516
Campaign Email campaign@voteluttrell.com
Campaign Web Site http://www.voteluttrell.com
Education GED when I was 16 Started Washburn University at 16 BA Sociology JD from Washburn Law
Community/Public Service Previously on the Board of Birth and Womens Center Was a mentor in the Thrive Topeka program Pro Bono work for low income individuals
Address 1419 SW College Ave Topeka, KS 66604
I do not believe our KORA laws need to be changed specifically. However, government organizations should work to be as transparent as possible and not use our current laws to hide or delay releasing important information. As DA, I will start from the position that information should be released and then review the request to determine if the release would (a) interfere with prospective law enforcement actions, criminal investigations or prosecutions; (b) reveal confidential sources or informants; (c) reveal confidential investigative techniques; (d) endanger a person’s life or physical safety; or (e) reveal information relative to the identify of a sex crime victim, as set forth in the statute. I will not rely on the statute to hide difficult or problematic information from the public as we see so often done.
The Immediate Intervention Program (IPP) will be most successful when it combines community interests and resources with the assistance and guidance of the DA's office. The goal of the DA's office should not only be to prosecute cases, but to also ensure that those individuals entering the criminal justice system have the best opportunities to help them from returning. The IPP needs mental health, education, economic, and mentorship support services from the community. When we invest in preventative and supportive services for our youth and their families, we create long term effects that reduce the chances that a child will return to the system. I will work with community leaders, elected officials, and other government organizations to ensure access to those services and will also create a restorative justice program that can assist in making sure the needs of those in the program are being met.
There is no one simple method for addressing gun deaths and gun violence in our community. It requires a multifaceted approach and cooperation within the community, law enforcement, and elected officials. As District Attorney I will expand data collection, tracking, and sharing between invested agencies so that we would have a more accurate and immediate understanding of where, when, and who was being affected as well as history and usage of the gun involved. I would continue working on projects like SAVE and work to expand their effectiveness as well as implement other community programs that have shown to help with gun violence reduction. I would work with local organizations to support and create youth outreach and intervention programs focused on reducing gun violence. I would work within the community to provide greater access to mental health services and programs that use crisis intervention teams when law enforcement are faced with mental health calls. And more.
I believe a District Attorney's office has a duty to use its resources and position in our community to take proactive and preventative steps in reducing crime and increasing community safety. Like so many criminal justice issues, domestic violence issues require support from multiple agencies in order to be the most effective. Many domestic violence victims have had or will have contact with a District Attorney's office as defendants, often for drug or low level offenses. The way we treat them will help determine how they interact and view the District Attorney's office when it comes to prosecuting their domestic violence cases. As District Attorney, I will work to ensure that they are treated fairly and given the support and opportunities for recovery and rehabilitation. I will also expand victim services for victims of domestic violence so that they feel supported both inside the courthouse and outside, including mental and physical health as well as economic support.
I believe the biggest barrier is a willingness to do the work to expand and strengthen that cooperation. A District Attorney's office should be proactive and if a known problem has known solutions, then the office should act. I will reach out to regional DA's and law enforcement to develop new working groups that can share information and resources. Another barrier is lack of information collection and sharing. My undergraduate degree is in Sociology and I know the value of proper data collection and analysis. As District Attorney I will expand our data collection and analysis and encourage the creation of a robust data collection, analysis, and sharing program throughout the region. It is sometimes difficult to see the forest from the trees, but having solid data to share and research will help us better understand and create the best practices to addressing as well as solving regional crime.