California Attorney General Kamala Harris earlier this week told Justice Department staff that only about one-third of the layoffs planned for the beginning of 2012 will actually occur after months of talks with Gov. Jerry Brown's office. About 200 of the layoffs would have hit sworn peace officers and virtually the department's entire Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement.
While Harris was trying to get the money restored -- or at least gain some say about how the cuts would be applied -- the Association of Special Agents launched a media and Internet campaign aimed at increasing public pressure on the governor.
In an email Tuesday to staff, posted after the jump, Harris said the cuts have been reduced to 102 sworn officers and 21 support staff. That same day, Harris announced the creation of a new eCrime unit that will fight identity theft, child exploitation, piracy and other crimes that exploit high tech.
We confirmed the staff email's authenticity with department spokeswoman Lynda Gledhill and asked whether there was a connection between Tuesday's announcements: Was the budget cut modified to accommodate the new unit?
No, Gledhill said. The eCrime unit will employ only 20 people, eight of them investigators.