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.
A videotape and related statements that the prosecution said was critical to the domestic violence case against Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi will be admitted at a trial set to begin Feb. 28, Judge Garrett Wong has ruled.
The ruling allows prosecutors to show the roughly 50-second video in which Mirkarimi's wife, Eliana Lopez, tearfully recounts the incident of New Years's Eve, 2011 and shows a bruise on her arm.Read more »
Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi may be guilty of domestic violence, and if he is -- as I've saidrepeatedly -- it's a serious crime and he should be held accountable. It will be very hard for him to remain in office with a DV conviction, even if it's just a misdemeanor.Read more »
I’m glad I got to the courtroom early; by the time Judge Susan Breall called the case of People v. Ross Mirkarimi, there wasn’t a single seat available, and Her Honor wasn’t allowing standing room.
What followed was a quick “not guilty” plea to three misdemeanor charges – and then a session that lasted more than two hours, with a long interruption, as the prosecution and defense argued over whether Mirkarimi was such a threat to his wife and two-year-old son that he should be forced to stay away from them and avoid any form of contact until after what is expected to be an early March trial.
In the process, Mirkarimi’s wife, Eliana Lopez, made a passionate plea against the restraining order and Deputy District Attorney Elizabeth Aguilar-Tarchi introduced new evidence to support her claims that the newly elected Sheriff is not only guilty of domestic violence but too dangerous to allow into his own home.