Why Mirkarimi pled guilty

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Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi didn’t want to cop a plea. He knew the damage it  would cause to his political career and he was prepared to fight the charges. But when it became clear that he was losing every single motion around the admissibility of evidence, even when he and his attorney, Lidia Stiglich, were convinced they were right on the merits -- and when it was clear from juror surveys that virtually everyone in town had read the salacious press accounts and it was impossible to find a neutral jury, he decided he had no choice.

That’s what people close to the sheriff told me shortly after Mirkarimi unexpectedly agreed to plead guilty to misdemeanor false imprisonment. It may seem an odd plea for a sheriff, but it was a way to get rid of the more serious charges. A domestic violence conviction would seriously interfere with Mirkarimi’s job -- among other things, nobody with a DV rap can possess a gun -- not that the sheriff of San Francisco needs to carry a gun, but in the law-enforcement world, domestic violence is (properly) taken very seriously.

The calls for the sheriff to resign have already started. An informal sfgate poll on the subject is already posted.

I talked to Mirkarimi shortly after he appeared in court, and he told me he has no plans to step down. “I wanted to resolve this matter and move forward with the important work of the department. And I terribly miss my family and I want to be re-united.”

That’s going to be tough -- someone will probably try to mount a recall effort and every single detail that has come out so far in the news media will be repeated if and when he runs for re-election in three years. In politics, that’s a long time away -- but these kinds of charges never disappear.

People close to the sheriff told me that that Mirkarimi was concerned that he couldn’t find a jury that hadn’t already convicted him in their minds. “The questionnaires were very clear,” one ally said. “Nearly everyone had read the newspapers and already had some kind of a negative opinion.”

Among other things, his friends said, Mirkarimi was concerned that  a former girlfriend, Christina Marie Flores, would be allowed to testify against him -- despite what his team considered serious questions about her credibility.

Flores used to be my next-door neighbor and I’ve always been friendly with her. I was on her TV show once. But the news media accounts have essentially ignored a detail that was in one of Mirkarimi’s defense motions:  After they broke up, Flores sent Mirkarimi a hate poem in which she not-terribly subtly threatened to damage his political career.

I’m not going to quote all of the emails cited in the brief (breakup+email=bad news); suffice to say that until December, 2008, Flores was clearly in love with Mirkarimi and sending him passionate notes asking him to reconsider what was obviously a move by Mirkarimi to end the relationship. (And yeah, there were nude pictures that Mirkarimi was supposed to “enjoy when you miss me.” Gak.)

On Jan 2, 2009, the brief states, “having understood that the relationship with Mirkarimi was over, Flores sent Mirkarimi a lengthy hate poem. In startling contrast to her prior e-mails to Mirkarimi, Flores now called Mirkarami `the worst type of waste of air’ and said that there ‘are smarter and more handsome men BY FAR.’

“Flores ended the poem with the following:

So as 2009 rolls in and you roll out
I remember what my life was all about
Surrounded by so many of my friends
I am rich and happy with how my story ends

Except one thing.

I have never had the distinct pleasure
Of meeting such an idiot of such great measure
That freely let me know of things
That could unwind plans of what his political future brings

Yes, I do know those, some of whom you hate.
Who could have a say in your fate
And long friendships with some that you despise
That after the fact have opened my eyes.

What to do with the ball in my court ...
Let us see what happens.”

Don’t know who “some of whom you hate” means, but Mirkarimi has had a contentious relationship the San Francisco Police Department. Flores is the daughter of a police officer and the ex-wife of another officer, who happens to be a domestic violence inspector.

Three years after that poem was written, when she heard about the DV allegations against Mirkarimi, she filed a police report alleging similar behavior. She also talked to two newspapers, the Chronicle and SF Weekly.

In her statement to the district attorney’s office, the brief states, “Flores conceded that she wanted to go public for personal reasons: ‘He said that that woman from Venuzuela (Lopez) knew about our relationship and it didn’t matter to her ... which I think is a lie. And that’s probably why I’m here because I don’t think she knew.’”

Doesn’t mean that anything she claims about Mirkarimi was untrue. A woman who is mad at her ex-boyfriend for whatever still has every right to complain about domestic violence, even later; if she was physically abused, then what happened at other points in the relationship doesn’t change anything.
But it’s interesting that the daily papers, which reported freely on the prosecution’s side of this story, haven’t mentioned the equally fascinating (and tawdry) allegations in the defense brief.

It's the kind of thing that, Mirkarimi's allies say, made it hard to find a fair jury.

Judges these days go out of their way not to exclude evidence in DV cases, and the fact that this was such a high-profile political case made that even more dramatic. Ruling that the videotape of Mirkarimi’s wife crying and showing a bruise and the testimony of an ex-girlfriend who said he abused her inadmissible would most likely have forced the district attorney to drop the charges. Very few judges would want to take that risk.

So now Mirkarimi has to deal with the fallout, and it raises the question: Can the progressive community accept and once again support a sheriff who has all of this baggage? Is there anything Mirkarimi can do to convince his allies and the voters that either (a) the charges were overblown or (b) he’s learned from this, is going into counseling, is a changed person, and can seek political redemption?

The city forgave Gavin Newsom when he had sex with his close friend’s wife (after he allegedly went into treatment for alcohol abuse) and forgave Willie Brown when he impregnated a campaign fundraiser (because nobody cares about that sort of thing these days), but domestic violence is a very different deal. As it should be.

Any yet, some people are clearly willing to give him a chance. Alix Rosenthal, a longtime leader on women’s issues who supported Mirkarimi for sheriff, told me that she doesn’t think he should step down.

“I think this whole thing has been blown way out of proportion,” she said.

Mirkarimi, she noted, needs to publicly go into counseling with his wife (which he can’t do until the stay-away order is lifted -- seriously, right now he can’t even go to counseling with his wife) and he needs to make it clear that he’s addressing anger-management issues. But she thinks he can still play a role in the progressive community.

There will be other progressives who disagree, and Mirkarimi will have to win them over. And all the while, the supporters of Chris Cunnie, the former Police Officers Association president who lost to Mirkarimi in the fall, aren’t going to let this go away quietly.

UPDATE: The Chron is already calling on Mayor Ed Lee to "investigate" the sheriff for misconduct. Investigate? As if there's anything that hasn't already become public? The real message is that the Chron wants Lee to try to get rid of Mirkarimi. And so it begins.

Comments

difficult. But the trial could have been moved. By pleading guilty, Ross has admitted his wrongdoing, after weeks of trenchant denials, and that is a sign that he is finally facing up to the consequences of his actions.

Your citation of Flores letter is unfortunate. If Ross was as violent with her as he has been with his wife (and that was the whole point, right?) then she had every reason to be angry. "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned", remember? That doesn't mean she is lying.

And that was Ross's real problem. If this had been just an isolated incident then, being DV, it would still be bad. But he's done this before with at least one other woman, and probably more since such behaviors are typically habitual and structural.

I think Ross has to stand down. He will have no standing or credibility in any similar case, has lost the faith of other LE officers, and him keeping his job is a slap in the face for battered women everywhere.

Ross has done one decent thing - now he needs to do another, and go.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 12:32 pm

It's not a factual charge. There wasn't any false imprisonment. The wife has proof. The District Attorney picked the charge. The media went after Mirkarimi, and just as SFBG lays it out, there was no possibility of an impartial jury. Move the trial? Never done for a misdemeanor. The trial judge batted the idea aside, not ruling on it. The motion filed to the Appellate Court is a peer review by the judges who work together, and the same writ filed with The Court of Appeals last Friday is moot when a deal is brokered. A guilty plea doesn't mean the accused is guilty of anything. It's a means to end the legal case, and it's not a conviction. The Chris Cunnie warriors just won't give up, including Geo Gascon who shared the ticket with him.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 13, 2012 @ 8:08 pm

What are you, guest, judge, jury and executioner?

Look for Lee/Gascon to find a way to leak the tape. Lee has already hinted at this, maybe he wanted or did see it already in order to buck himself up for continuing the frameup.

I don't personally know any law enforcement officers, (besides Ross) but their claiming to be so demoralized in a bunch of bullpucky. They have a dog in this fight and it's Chris Cunnie. For an interesting and enlightening exercise go online at EthicsCommission.org and examine the campaign contributions to Cunnie's campaign. You will find some names from Gascon's office (he said they had been "sealed off" from any influence on the case, more bullpucky), and you will also find some prominent figures from SF politics and state politics. Law enforcement is highly represented. Their problem is that they can't accept Cunnie's loss in the campaign, especially to Ross. What happened is that Cunnie was in, then out when his son died in Hawaii, then back in again at the last minute. In a 3 way race at the last minute, Ross pulled it out. They won't give it up and attempt in any way possible to overturn the results.

As far as Lee, he was appointed mayor before running and winning, and he thinks the appointment route is the normal thing in City Hall. That may have been so in the past, especially in the totally corrupt Willie Brown era, but times are changing and people are getting hip to machine politics, of which this whole episode is part. How sad for the city that Lee was persuaded to perpetuate the agony, no matter what. He can justify all he wants, but we're on to him. Honeymoon over.

Posted by barry eisenberg on Mar. 21, 2012 @ 5:18 pm

The left sees cconspiracies everywhere but, as usual, they sabotage themselves without any outside help.

Posted by Greg on Mar. 21, 2012 @ 5:24 pm

Has he learnt nothing:
"For the last two months, this case has caused my family, my department - the Sheriff's Department - and this city great turmoil and pain and disappointment.."

This case did not cause this, Ross did. For any forgiveness to begin, he needs to own up.

Also SFBG said after this was all over you would ask Ross for an accurate detail of what occured. Do you stand by that? Will you be asking?

Posted by Chris Pratt on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 12:36 pm

Ross claims he is only copping a plea because he lost various motions. But that's not the real point here. I don't blame a guy trying to get damning evidence tossed out to save his skin but the fact is that, either way, that evidence exists and is real. So we know Ross is guilty and he was simply trying to get off on technicalities.

So yes, Ross needs to complete the process. Full allocution of the facts, and throw himself onto the mercy of public opinion.

And he should resign and then stand again for re-election, if he truly believes he has the support of the people.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 12:48 pm

Yes, we will, as both Tim and I have said we would. There's been a rush to judgment in this case, and I think we should hear more details from Ross before we draw conclusions about what happened that night. Clearly, it was a very messy situation, and it's probably good that Ross will now get some counseling. But the details of what happened remain murky.

Posted by steven on Mar. 13, 2012 @ 9:41 pm

If the prosecution had such a strong case, why did it even offer him a plea deal? Goes to show all the pols are hand in glove to protect their own!

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:08 pm

Usually there are multiple counts and a guilty or no-contendo plea on one makes the others go away.

Note also that usually the DV count abides and it is the other counts that go away. A DV rap is worse so actually Ross did quite well, and can't complain about bad treatment.

And of course, if he were really innocent, he would NEVER cop a plea. In fact he has now admitted guilt and apologized to all concerned. If he did it then it doesn't matter how "good2 or "bad" the DA's case is. He did the deed.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:15 pm

Mirkarimi aside - "And of course, if he were really innocent, he would NEVER cop a plea." I'm sorry, but that isn't true. Innocent people plead guilty or falsely confess all the time, for various reasons. If you're interested in the topic, this is a great book on when and why people may choose to do so. http://www.amazon.com/Actual-Innocence-Justice-Wrong-Right/dp/0451209826...

Not that I think Mirkarimi is innocent (or even not guilty) by any stretch, but let's not make sweeping generalizations about what a guilty plea actually means.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:54 pm

Apologies are civil and so not required by plea bargains.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 3:11 pm

~97% of cases go out on "plea". Frequently, said pleas amount to coerced confessions. Much of what constitutes day to day procedure by prosecutors in US DA's offices is illegal or criminal in the rest of the developed world. There are so many factors working against a defendant from the fact that prosecutors have in effect no legal liability for misconduct, disciplining a judge is expensive, time consuming and requires connections, judges are mostly former prosecutors, and most reporting on a case will be by beat reporters who have a relationship to maintain with the DA and will lose access to future sealed affidavits (also illegal, but nonetheless common) if they actually question the DA's case (I'm looking at you Van Derbeken).

I could go on and on and on, but needless these things are NOT black and white and the system is in dire need of reform.

I've never been partial to the progressives but it is clear from the way that this case has been pursued that Gascon couldn't care less about Mirkarimi's wife's welfare. I would not be supportive of him but for the fact that this case has been pursued in an abusive and openly partisan fashion. Having been made a spectacle of myself and even though I honestly I'm better off for having left I think readers need to question the DA's words just as they would Cheney's or Geithner's. There has been a steady erosion in defendants' rights over the last 20 years that dovetails all too well with the recent formal suspension of habeas corpus.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 22, 2012 @ 5:13 pm

well said, guest (per your comment on Mar. 22 @ 5:13 pm). you sound like someone who knows what they're talking about. but what's the story with Van Derbekenr? you've got me curious now.

Posted by tatiana on Mar. 22, 2012 @ 5:51 pm

I'm afraid I know all too well from first hand experience. I'm deliberately avoiding giving details because they would distract from the message that I want to convey, which is that the court system is no longer what we were taught in civics class. Most members of the population would just as soon hold on to their illusions about how the system actually functions, but even those with open eyes to see are mislead by the journalistic status quo.

I shouldn't really be singling out Van Derbeken - I just happen to feel personally harmed by him because he was given access to the sealed affidavits in my case. With one exception he refused to report any of the information that came out regarding the misconduct of the plaintiffs (much of it criminal), never mentioned the ways in which the prosecutor was doing an end run around my ability to have the plaintiffs be questioned, and frequently reported things that were simply counterfactual. I'd really rather draw attention to the fact that wherever there is an established relationship in place that bias is unavoidable. If Van Derbeken were to ever be genuinely critical of the DA, future sealed affidavits would simply find their way to someone else and he would likely end up back at the third string paper he came from if he were to find a job at all.

The health of journalism has been brutalized by media consolidation and the cost competition that has caused. It is far worse now than it was when Chomsky wrote 'Manufactured Consent' (and unfortunately Chomsky kind of misses the mark in that the problem isn't the 'right', its monied interests and the opacity that they seek to benefit from - the left / right divide is more often than not a political diversion).

Years ago, my father in law's paper was bought by Knight-Ridder, all the employees were fired and then required to re-apply for their jobs at reduced wages. It was an end run around union benefits, but more importantly it undermined the integrity of a previously family owned business that took pride in their paper and what it sought to offer the community.

This article in the Columbia Journalism Review talks a bit about the problem of journalists being biased by speaking fees and other favors, but I think it actually overlooks the fact that the question of bias exists wherever there is a dependency:
http://www.cjr.org/feature/money_talks_marchapril2012.php?page=all

Posted by Guest on Mar. 23, 2012 @ 5:08 pm

It's too bad Ross didn't get his day in court. it's too bad his ex-girlfriend of 8 plus years, the one who said Ross never abused her or came close, didn't get to tell her side of the story. It's too bad that Christina Flores's lies get to stay out there, unchecked. It's too bad the Chronicle never once did a fair job of reporting this--just threw whatever the D.A. gave out onto the front page. All this seems very tragic to me.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:11 pm

is guilty and has apologized to his wife, neighbor and ex?

You make it sound like Ross is the only innocent party here. Which is kinda funny.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:23 pm

He did not admit guilt to DV. He pled to get the case behind him and the city because he knew he could not get a fair shake. The D.A. knew, for example, that Christina Flores was not a credible witness, but allowed her to throw her b.s. hoping that in court there might be some doubt as to her credibility, but not complete doubt. Ross is the most innocent party here. He was holding his wife while she freaked out, she pulled away, he left a bruise and for that--all this? It's tragic, I remain convinced. Pleading guilty does not always mean you're guilty. It means "UNcle!" They've won--the D.A. Had this been a real D.V. case, the D.A. would not allow this plea. So shut up already you gloater.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:40 pm

You must be the only person apart from Ross who thinks he is inncoent.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:56 pm

And, you are an attorney/witness who has direct knowledge of the case and knows the evidence that was going to be presented by Ms. Flores? So, you can definitively say you have proof her testimony would be false? If so, you should contact Mr. Mirkarimi's attorney, so he can file a defamation lawsuit against her.

Also, you clearly don't know much about the plea bargain process because even in a "real DV" case the DA will often accept a plea rather than take on the risks of a trial because DV cases are often notoriously difficult to prove, even when there is strong evidence. Why? Because in many cases, unless someone is beaten into a coma (and not always even then), juries often don't care about DV, even in supposedly "liberal progressive" cities like SF.

So, remain "unconvinced" all you like--that is your prerogative. But, don't pretend you have some special knowledge no else does. Because if you do, you would have been using it to help Mr. Mirkarimi (or you should be).

Posted by Chris on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 4:47 pm

C'mon Tim, you can't hide as a "guest". We know it's you.

Posted by Patrick on Mar. 13, 2012 @ 10:17 am

What I do find so odd in all of this is any sense of healthy skepticism by the general S.F. public and the progressive S.F. public as to the story spun by the DAs office.

Progressives generally understand that DAs often overreach. It is the nature of the job under our adversarial legal system.

But there seem to be some hot-button issues that cause progressive skepticism to fly out of the window.

What we know from the facts presented is that Ross grabbed his wife's arm while they were arguing about custody, causing a bruise, and that his wife DID NOT call the police and DID NOT want to press charges....everything else is spin by the DA. The false imprisonment charge is particularly ridiculous.... maybe that is why Ross agreed to plea to that.

Progressives put far too much power in the hands of reactionaries when they "run and hide" when particular allegations are made. Defending Ross or any man accused of DV when the accusations appear false or overreaching (particularly when the victim credibly and articulately charges that the accusations are overreaching) IS NOT the same as defending DV.

Anyone reading this sentence can be accused of almost anything at almost anytime. Regardless of the heinousness of the accusations, anyone accused deserves the public to have enough skepticism in the prosecutor so that baseless accusations do not have the power to destroy lives or political careers that they were given in this case.

S.

Posted by Stephen L. on Mar. 13, 2012 @ 3:26 pm

Why is the Chronicle even talking about Mirkarimi? This case is all about Christina Flores, not Mirkarimi. But you would never know that from reading the Chronicle. Thanks, Tim.

Posted by Steroidal Progressive on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:25 pm

bomb and scoop here, and had to hold off before the deal.

But now Tim gets his chance to belittle a vicious attack on Ross's wife by revealing an email from another woman that Ross abused.

Don't you have any consideration for how hard it was for Tim to just sit on this bombshell?

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:42 pm

I'm sure, Mr. or Ms. Guest, that you are well aware of Tim's Murrow-esque ability to impartially dive into any issue, uncover the facts, report on them fairly and then let the chips fall where they may.

This instance is nothing out of the ordinary.

I also want to remind everyone that Mirkarimi is innocent until proven guilty, which he wasn't. He pleaded guilty.

Posted by Steroidal Progressive on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:13 pm

Please. Your hero wouldn't have pleaded guilty if he wasn't. Would you? Under any circumstances? What kind of spineless individual would? And a Sheriff?

And, oh my gosh. People are calling for an investigation about his suitability to remain in office. Just because he is on probation for 3 years with required anger management classes.

Our Sheriff just copped a plea in a domestic violence case. If he was a moderate you would be all over his unsuitability to remain in office.

There shouldn't even be an investigation. He should have stepped down at the same time that he pleaded guilty. Public officials always do. San Francisco deserves better.

Posted by Troll on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:36 pm

I've been skeptical of Mirkarimi since he bolted the Green Party and became a Democrat to further his political career. (I feel the same about Jane Kim.) I held my nose and voted for him for Sheriff rather than leave my ballot blank for that office.

Not guilty, guilty, whatever. This episode, in conjuction with selling out to the Democratic party, shows his character. I wish I had my vote back.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:38 pm

You can't just move a trial; a judge has to approve a change of venue motion, and in this case, he refused.

As for the guilty plea: The NY Times had an interesting piece this weekend talking about how many people plead guilty even though they're innocent because they don't trust their ability to get a fair trial -- and because the outcome could be so bad if they lose. I'm not proclaiming Mirkarimi's innocence here, but a guilty plea is often a strategic legal move; even if he's convinced he did nothing wrong, if he looked at the jury pool and the court rulings and figured there was a good chance he'd lose (and yes, innocent people get convicted sometimes) he might have figured it was better to accept a more modest penalty and plead out. That's very common.

Posted by tim on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:40 pm

If he was merely pleading guilty as a tactical move, as you suggest, then there would be no need to apologize which, of course, connotes having something to apologize for!

Are you now going to demand a full story from him? Are you going to ask the tough questions? Are you going to insist he allocutes to his wrongdoings?

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:59 pm

He is required under oath to admit committing the charges he is pleading guilty to, he must also admit to doing so under his own free will, with the sentence being handed down from the judge, not necessarily the one that the DA will recommend per the plea agreement.

So are you saying he will be lying, in other words committing perjury, when he makes his statement?

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:48 pm

All excuses and rationalizations aside.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:42 pm
R/M

Anyone who has dealt with domestic violence cases is aware that the physical
actions of the perpetrator are not isolated or one time situations. It is too bad Nancy Lemon, the expert did not get to testify. Let's remember the first act by
R/M which started this prosecution.

The SFBG article is full of holes. But that is to be expected.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:43 pm

Except for Joanne Hayes White and Julius Turman, right?

Posted by marcos on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:59 pm

Wow, this is getting really convincing.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:09 pm

He saw the writing on the wall. Once the video was ruled admissible, this became a tough case to win. And trials are very expensive. He has probably spent six figures on attorneys' fees already and would have spent at least six figures trying the case.

I'm in the camp that says he should have pled no contest weeks ago. He would have been able to salvage some of his reputation if he played this right, but he played it wrong.

Posted by The Commish on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:45 pm

"... the former Police Officers Association president who lost to Mirkarimi in the fall, aren’t going to let this go away quietly."

Not to mention the supporters (basically the rank and file of the Sheriffs department) of Paul Miyamoto who lost to Mirkarimi and finished ahead of Chris Cunnie.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 1:46 pm

Ross was smart enough to appoint Miyamoto for Assistant Sheriff as he has no idea what he's doing . A humbling appointment considering Miyamoto was his major opponent in the last campaign and came in a very close second.

Chris Cunnie came in an embarrassing third even after the Feinstein, Newsom, and Harris blessing. How convenient the Chron and Examiner both endorsed Cunnie and are also ground zero for the Mirkarimi saga. Wreaks of a sore loser.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 14, 2012 @ 12:06 pm

Ross is the only one providing real leadership on public safety. There was a murder on my block over the weekend. What do the DA and the police have to say about the fact that violent felonies are committed with impunity in this city?

Posted by Erika McDonald on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:11 pm

First, Ross isn't involved in investigating or preventing crime. That's not his job.

Second, even if it was, he hasn't been in the job long enough to achieve anything.

Crime is a problem but only because the pols underfund the cops in favor of social programs that actually encourage the kind of people who commit crimes.

You are hopelessly naive. and as a woman, how can you stick up for a wife batterer?

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:24 pm

I like the community policing measures Ross put forward as Supervisor.
Underfunded cops? We have about 2000 of them, all well paid.
I guess I am naive to believe that the DA and the police should actually give a damn about all the murders happening.

Posted by Erika McDonald on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 8:39 pm

message does thats end to all the criminals?

Posted by Guest on Mar. 13, 2012 @ 8:36 am

http://www.sfbg.com/comment/reply/24199/55842

...That they will never be prosecuted unless they become an elected official who dares to demand that the police do their jobs.

Posted by Erika McDonald on Mar. 13, 2012 @ 9:20 am

Yes, we have a criminal running the jails. But it's not like he is a serial killer.

Our Sheriff has been legally convicted only for Wrong Imprisonment.

What's so bad about that?

Posted by Steroidal Progressive on Mar. 13, 2012 @ 9:28 am

imprisonment being in charge of imprisoning people?

Gee . . .

Posted by Anonymous on Mar. 15, 2012 @ 10:54 am

He's a goner. Redmond must be real proud defending a serial abuser in the interest of "progressive" politics...

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:22 pm

him down. By sticking up for a hopeless pol in a hopeless cause, Tim showed great insensitivity towards women and all victims of crime. He was so obsessed with preserving the ruined reputation of one of the very few liberals that had ever wona city-wide election that he forgto to check his facts and stick his finger in the air to see which way the wind was blowing.

Tim needs to tell ross to either allocute to his crimes or he must demand his immediate resignation.

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:27 pm

We badly wanted to air our dirty laundry outside the closet of shame in which we've been living during Ross' political career.

Posted by Mirkin's Panty Collection on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:33 pm

Ross was obviously terrifed of being found guilty of all counts AND of having his torridly abusive past relationships coming under public scrutiny.

We reap what we sew, ya know?

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:39 pm

It's time the dirty laundry, of which we are part, were allowed to see the freshening, cleansing light of day!

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:48 pm

The apology he gave was part of the negotiated plea deal. Again, common in these cases.

We've said all along, and I will say again, that Mirkarimi needs to give us an explanation; he needs to tell us what happened that day or nobody's going to believe he's innocent. He couldn't do that while charges were pending, obviously, but once the sentencing is over and the case is closed, he can and should.

And I have never once said that the charges were not serious or that he should not be held accountable. That said, I have to wonder: If the DA's case was so solid, why did they agree to a plea bargain that dropped the DV charges, the ones that were the most serious both legally and politically?

Posted by tim on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:35 pm

rap. Did you know why? Part of it is that the County gets federal funds for every successful DV conviction. That's a big part of why there's a zero-tolerance approach to DV - a bruise on your wife's arm will get you in more trouble than breaking the nose of a stranger.

I suspect both sides wanted to avoid a trial. Risky for both sides. And expensive for the city too. A single count plea is routine.

But an apology is most definitely NOT routine. In fact they are rarely required unless a full allocution is required for. The fact that Ross has apologized is because he knows he has things to apologize for. And at this point, who doesn't know that? Ross should also apologize to the progressive community for betraying them as well.

Tim, why not tell us about your anger that he did this? and how it has harmed the "cause"?

Posted by Guest on Mar. 12, 2012 @ 2:53 pm