Leaders in Albany are throwing their backing to the challenger in the race for Albany County district attorney.

Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan and County Legislator Carolyn McLaughlin both announced their endorsement of Matt Toporowski for Albany County DA on Friday. The elected officials say the county is in urgent need of a new approach to criminal justice.

Toporowski is challenging incumbent David Soares in a Democratic primary on June 23. Soares seeks his fifth term in the DA's office.

As a former employee in that office, Toporowski says he knows how to make the system more fair for all, and local leaders to say they want to see that change become a reality.

"With these same people, [we] were standing behind another candidate 16 years ago," McLaughlin said. "What has changed that makes us stand here today? I dare say not much has changed, and that is why we are standing here."