One day after Andrea Alarcón announced she was temporarily stepping down from the Los Angeles Board of Public Works amid a child endangerment probe, City Councilman Richard Alarcón defended his daughter and said he was glad she was "seeking the professional help she needs."
Andrea Alarcón is under investigation after police found her 11-year-old daughter wandering City Hall unattended shortly before midnight on Nov. 16.
The police investigation follows revelations that Andrea Alarcón, 33, was arrested in December on suspicion of driving under the influence and cruelty to a child because her daughter was in the car.
In a statement released Friday, Richard Alarcón said his daughter and granddaughter have a "beautiful relationship" and he was "proud of Andrea's ability to balance single parenting with an intense professional career."
"Obviously, as a father, I am concerned about the recent reports in the media about my daughter. As a family, we take these matters very seriously and are supporting Andrea and my granddaughter through this difficult time.
"I do not believe these incidents have affected Andrea's job performance," he added. "She is recognized as an amazing talent at City Hall. But I am pleased that Andrea is seeking the professional help she needs to resolve these matters.
The child endangerment probe by the Los Angeles Police Department was triggered when her daughter was found by officers as she wandered around City Hall after a gala.
According to a source close to the case, her daughter was taken to the LAPD's Central Division, where a child endangerment report was taken, and a representative from the Department of Children and Family Services summoned.
Andrea Alarcón was reached about 2 a.m, said the source, and came downtown to retrieve her daughter.
The incident occurred the same night that Project Restore, a preservation and architecture group, held an event honoring Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa on the south steps of City Hall. The event ended by about 9:30 p.m., according to several participants who attended.
Two guests interviewed by the Daily News, who asked not to be identified, said they assumed Andrea Alarcón attended the party, but did not personally see her, or her daughter, at the event.
Following a news report about the incident, Villaraigosa issued a statement Thursday from Andrea Alarcón, in which she indicated she would seek professional help, but didn't specify the treatment.
The police probe marks the latest drama to roil the Alarcóns, a politically influential family that's long held prominent City Hall positions.
Councilman Alarcón and his wife, Flores Montes de Oca are currently awaiting trial on perjury and voter fraud charges for allegedly living outside the 7th Council District boundaries, and lying about it.
A graduate of Georgetown University and Loyola Law School, Andrea Alarcón worked for the offices of California Attorney General Bill Lockyer and Attorney General Jerry Brown, according to her biography on the Department of Public Works web site.
She was appointed president of the Board of Public Works in 2011, two years after being named to the board by Villaraigosa, and makes more than $127,000 a year, according to the city controller's website.
Her mother, Corina Alarcón, has been active in politics, serving as president of the Fire Commission, and on the Board of Police Commissioners and the city's Building and Safety Commission, among other duties.
In an email on Friday, Villaraigosa spokesman Peter Sanders said the length of Andrea Alarcón's leave of absence hasn't been determined. She will use her sick time during her leave, he said.
Capri Maddox, a commissioner on the Board of Public Works, will take on Andrea Alarcón's duties while she is gone, Sanders added.