Demetrius Lawrence Joins Field for Brooklyn Senate Seat

Demetrius Lawrence.

Demetrius Lawrence.

Demetrius Lawrence, a community activist and a vice chairman on Brooklyn Community Board 9, is joining the campaign for newly-elected Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams’ former seat in the State Senate.

Mr. Lawrence, who said his kickoff fund-raiser would be this Friday, confirmed his intentions in a brief phone interview this morning.

“I am going to be running. I will be be a candidate,” he said, vowing to represent all of the bizarrely-shaped district, which is based in Crown Heights but also ropes in neighborhoods like Sunset Park. “I want to build on a strong community with all of the diverse groups.”

Mr. Lawrence is facing off against two announced candidates already: Jesse Hamilton, an attorney and district leader backed by Mr. Adams, and Rubain Dorancy, an attorney with roots in the Haitian-American community who has raised over $100,000 so far.

One local politico predicted “political war” in the district, with forces lining up behind Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Lawrence, but Mr. Lawrence himself said he had no confirmed support from elected officials. “However I did speak with quite a few of them,” he added, “and some unions are leaning my way.”

A special election to fill the Adams vacancy once seemed possible but now looks unlikely as Gov. Andrew Cuomo has declined to initiate the process. Instead the heavily Democratic seat is set to be filled through the regularly scheduled primary and general elections later this year.