Los Angeles City Council Scandal Rages On With Kevin de Leon


Kevin de leon speaking in 2012 (photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Jimena Palomo, Arts and Entertainment Editor

In November 2022, Los Angeles City Council members Nury Martinez, Gil Cedillo, and Kevin de León went through tremendous criticism after the racist audio obtained by the Los Angeles Times was uploaded online. The audio, which was recorded during a Council meeting, included many racist comments which caught the attention of hundreds of thousands of people, both in Los Angeles and around the world.

Later on, hundreds of activists took matters into their own hands by holding protests outside of the involved council member’s homes. Even after multiple attempts to get the involved council members to resign, council members seem to still be living their lives peacefully with no consequences. This brought even more anger to activists that didn’t seem to understand why they were still employed by the city they live in.

Nury Martinez was the first councilwoman of Los Angeles to be of hispanic descent many had high hopes for her. All of those hopes shattered once the audio was leaked. The words that had come out of her mouth left everyone in a state of shock.

Later on, she sent her resignation letter which became public. In the statement, she said that she would be leaving the city council and taking this incident as a chance for her to grow. Some people believe the only reason she resigned was that she was caught in the act.

Even though she has now resigned, this incident will forever be part of her image. In the audio, she brought up fellow council member Mike Bonin’s child, who “needed a beatdown” because of the child’s behavior during a  Martin Luther King Jr. parade.

There were other racist comments made and Martinez not only made insensitive comments toward a child but also shared her dislike toward Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascón. After the full audio was leaked, many enraged protesters gathered in front of Martinez’s home.

Kevin de Leon, another council member who was also heard in the leaked tape, is still in his position more than a month later since the news broke. Since the incident, he has been interviewed by various news anchors. He seems to show no emotion about what he had done and seemed to be unapologetic. Petitions were then started by angered Los Angeles City residents who feel disgusted by these actions.

Currently, there still hasn’t been any progress made by the protestors. De Leon currently attended a City Council meeting despite the outbursts of angry protesters.