California State Senator Roderick Wright indicted on perjury charges

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A Los Angeles County grand jury has indicted State Senator Roderick Wright on perjury charges.

Prosecutors accuse Wright of lying about where he lives. The state senator says he lives in Inglewood. Prosecutors contend that he lives in Baldwin Hills – outside his 25th State Senate District. California law requires legislators to live in the districts they represent.

The eight-count felony indictment charges Wright with filing a false declaration of candidacy, voter fraud and perjury. Wright, who’s 58 years old, pleaded not guilty. If convicted, he faces eight years in prison and could be barred from elected office.

Wright’s a prominent figure in Southland black politics. He worked for Congresswoman Maxine Waters and served in the State Assembly before voters elected him to the state senate two years ago. Civil rights activist Earl Ofari Hutchinson said Wright’s indictment raises questions about prosecutors’ treatment of black elected officials, and he promised to look closely for indications of any double standard.