Controversial Madera County District Attorney likely to be unseated

MADERA, Calif. (KFSN) -- Polls for Madera County District Attorney candidates show prosecutors Sally Moreno and Paul Hornick in the lead.

As of Wednesday, they are both ahead of Madera County's controversial current District Attorney, David Linn.

Abuse allegations have been swirling around Linn since last year. An investigator said in 2017 that victims claimed Linn made harassing, racist comments, and lewd gestures toward female employees.

Linn has denied all allegations in the past and didn't answer or return calls from ABC30 the day after California's primary election night, showing him behind prosecutors Sally Moreno and Paul Hornick.

At last count, polls showed Fresno County prosecutor, former police officer and army veteran Sally Moreno leading the race.

She says she'll be tough on crime, and wants to bring the best prosecuting practices to Madera.

"I'm a very experienced prosecutor, and I'm born and raised in this valley and I'm invested in this community. I've been involved in the community of Madera for years on the school board of my kid's school, coaching mock trial, this is my home, and my community and I look forward to keeping it safe," says candidate Moreno.

Moreno is a Madera resident who has worked with David Linn in the past.

"I worked for Mr. Linn for about six months, and I saw what was happening in the office, and you can watch how that thing's going to go and see that Madera is going to need something better. Madera deserves an experienced prosecutor," says Moreno.

The runner-up behind Moreno is Madera County Senior Deputy District Attorney Paul Hornick. He told ABC30 on election night how he would change things in the office after Linn.

"My administration in my office would really be a normal, professional office, I'd really focus on leadership leading by example, I'd be a present, and accountable district attorney and I'd be available to the public," says candidate Paul Hornick.
Hornick says he'd improve staffing and communication, and put in place new systems they currently lack. One would be something that could help them track cases where people fail to appear for court.

If neither candidate gets 50% of the vote by the time the final numbers are released, voters will have the chance to vote between the top two candidates in November.

If one candidate gets 50% of the vote, the race will end in June.

The Madera County elections office says they'll be updating poll numbers Friday by 5pm.
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