More on the Mirkarimi case


I wrote up the Jan. 19 hearing on the domestic violence charges against Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, but a few more points are worth thinking about as the embattled sheriff prepares for another court hearing Jan. 23.

For one, the stay-away order that Judge Susan Breall issued doesn't allow Mirkarimi to have any contact with his two-year-old son for the next 45 days. That seems not only harsh but bad for the kid, who doesn't understand why he can't see his daddy and is, not surpisingly, confused and upset. There are no winners in this case (except the folks who would just as soon see Mirkarimi gone and replaced with a more traditional law-enforcement sheriff), but the biggest loser, the one I feel worst about, is the kid. If the judge was really worried about Mirkarimi being a danger to his son (which, frankly, seems like a huge stretch), then she could have authorized supervised visitation. That's not at all unusual in these kinds of cases, and would at least give the child a chance to have contact and a relationship with his father during the period when all of this is being sorted out in adult court.

There's not a lot of talk about the inherent conflicts of interest in this case, issues that come about from a sheriff who was once an investigator in the District Attorney's Office facing criminal charges filed by that same office, which is now run by a former police chief who the sheriff clashed with repeatedly when he was a supervisor. I don't know the law on this or how it could possibly play out, but there's an interesting article about it all here.

It's odd that the conflict piece ran in a publication that makes its living bashing local progressives, but everything about the media in this case is odd (except that fact that it's become an international zoo). The one writer who has talked seriously about Mirkarimi's right to be treated as innocent until proven guilty -- and the only major voice in the media urging him not to step down -- is the Chron's conservative columnist Debra Saunders

Another interesting media tidbit: I don't know Mirkarimi will enough to have any insight into his behavior in romantic relationships, but one person who really does -- his longtime former girlfriend, journalist Evelyn Nieves -- has been quoted only once in the bottom of a New York Times/Bay Citizen story, to wit:

“I was shocked when I read about it,” Evelyn Nieves, a journalist and a past partner of Mr. Mirkarimi’s, said in an e-mail. “Ross and I were together for the better part of a decade — eight years or so — and never once did he even come close to being physical during an argument.”

“It’s just not his way,” Ms. Nieves added. “He was way more prone to proposing that disagreements be talked out. He could talk and talk.”

Again: Doesn't mean he's not guilty. Doesn't mean he hasn't changed. Just interesting that only one publication has even tried to contact and get a quote from Nieves.

I'm not a lawyer, of course, but it seems to me that the defining moment in this case will not be the trial but the pre-trial hearing in which Mirkarimi's lawyer tries to get a judge to rule that the videotape of Eliana Lopez talking about her injury and her fear of her husband can't be used in court. Bob Egelko has an excellent piece here; he points out that if the video isn't admissible as evidence, the case will collapse. If a judge rules (and the legal arguments seem to support it) that the prosecution can't introduce the video or show it to the jury, then I suspect the district attorney will have to drop the charges; if Lopez refuses to testify against her husband, there's nothing else to go on.

But this is a domestic violence case, and judges (no surprise) are political, and how many members of the local bench really want to be the one who ended such a high-profile case (and in effect, let the suspect walk) on what the media will call "a technicality?"







She says it's a political conspiracy aimed at her husband. What evidence do you have that the wife is behind this?

Posted by Guest on Jan. 27, 2012 @ 7:23 pm

I think Eliana was laying a plan for a future divorce not thinking this woman would take it to the authorities. Maybe Ross is the victim in this.

Posted by Guest on Jan. 27, 2012 @ 6:39 pm

Prediction - Ross walks and then shortly thereafter, so does his wife...proving in life what wasnt provable in court...

Posted by SoSayeth on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 10:00 am

Is everybody's favorite 'friday fish wrap' laying the grounds for a dismissal of the case. I quote from today's 'City Insider' column, presumably quoting from one of the 'reliable sources' referenced in the article.
" When they (D.A's office) receive a referral from the Police Department, prosecutors look at a mix of criteria to determine whether to charge it. That includes
the police report,
the suspect's criminal history,
the injuries to the victim,
whether there's evidence beyond the victim's account,
whether there was a 911 call,
and whether there are witnesses".
I don't think anyone commenting on this issue has expressed support of domestic, or any other form, of violence; though the usual, retarded, haters have been spewing their ugly bile; the position taken by most has been to condemn DV; expect equal enforcement of the law; presume innocence until proven guilty. Based upon the criteria above however there does seem to be the possibility that there might have been a less than impartial decision to prosecute made in this case. I don't have the answers, just some questions.
1) Was there a police report.
2) Does the accused have a criminal history.
3) What are the injuries (beyond a 'bruise' that was not visible a few days later).
4) Was there a 911 call.
5) What is the victims account, and what evidence beyond that.
6) Are there witnesses to the alleged event.
HB-M/PAULT. I approve this message.

Posted by Patrick Monk. RN on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 11:01 am

I'll just bet you Eliana Lopez feels pretty trapped and does not know the best way to get out of her situation -- for herself and her son.

I was raised by two people with narcissistic personality disorders. It was hell. One was a rage-aholic like Ross Mirkarimi who blamed me for everything, the other was a cold, resentful, and self-absorbed. How enraged I am at all the people who have been conspiring to protect Ross Mirkarimi from the charges of domestic violence -- and those who knew he had anger management issues and are yet still continuing to support him.

Posted by Guest on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 11:09 am

I agree with you and empathize with your experiences. Though not having personally suffered through your trauma, way to many of my patients over the years have, and have shared their experiences with me.
I do however disagree with your statement that people are "conspiring to protect Ross Mirkarimi from the charges". While that may be true elsewhere I have not seen it here. In fact the only 'conspiracy' I can find here is among those who seem to uphold the concept that one is guilty until proven innocent, and this belief is based on prurient, sketchy, incomplete and sensational reporting.
I fully agree that if/when found guilty, Mirkarimi should be subject to whatever sentencing is appropriate. The point that I, and I believe many others, have been trying to make is that no 'special consideration' should be given either 'for or against'.

Posted by Patrick Monk. RN on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 11:48 am

So, if Mirkarimi's wife is saying that no abuse took place, how does she explain her videotaped account of the incident? Is she denying that she is on tape accusing him of putting his hands on her? Is she denying that she sent text messages describing the abuse she suffered? If so, how is she going to explain the existence of this evidence?

You jackasses can play "wait and see" all you want, but I guarantee you that Mrs Mirkarimi is on tape accusing her husband of Domestic Violence. Go ahead and post whatever bullshit you like - you know that tape exists. The DA would never claim to have it as evidence otherwise. But, did Ross do it? I have no idea. Maybe, maybe not. That's for the jury to decide. But lets not pretend that there is any doubt that Lopez made the accusation on tape.

This is what I really don't get. Why doesn't she simply explain why she made untrue (according to her now) statements about her husband instead of wailing about ridiculous conspiracy theories? It's one thing for the DA to pursue a case where the victim is refusing to cooperate, but it's a whole other matter for the DA to pursue a case where the "victim" outright admits to lying and making up the whole thing. And isn't that basically what Lopez is claiming now?

So what gives?

Posted by RamRod on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 9:23 pm

@RamRod - aka - LimpDick. Thank you for playing.

Posted by Patrick Monk. RN on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 10:47 pm

I suggest you pick one of your orifices and go fuck yourself asap :)

Posted by RamRod on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 2:55 am

Devastating! But just for kicks, why do you think Eliana doesn't just rebut her own recorded statements instead of making up conspiracies?

Maybe because she told the truth on the recordings?

Posted by Guest on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 1:24 pm

So, you believe she told the truth on the recordings? Well I tend to agree with you there. But, if she was telling the truth on the recordings, then she is NOT telling the truth now when she says that the abuse never happened and that this is all a gringo conspiracy against Ross. She doesn't get to have it both ways.

Neither do you, Greg. You Bi-Curious little Bruise Monkey

Posted by RamRod on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 5:10 pm

I can quickly count --- hold on---at least 9 appropriate orifices into which rods should/could be rammed. Was gonna say more but .... fuck it .... need to prioritize ... gotta take a dump

Posted by Patrick Monk. RN on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 10:37 pm

Damn, did I write either, both, or none of these, pas importante, Simple Simon the Shadow knows.

Posted by Patrick Monk. RN on Jan. 29, 2012 @ 10:51 pm

Looks like somebody got a wild cat

Ross ought to introduce a reel of all of Eliana's scenes where she has "bruises" that are from makeup and all the scenes where she is beating men.

Either the bruise came from self-defense or a makeup brush.

Posted by CONCERNED CITIZEN on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 9:32 am

Or maybe she just needed to be put in her place. Bruises heal easily.

Posted by Greg on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 10:33 am

I haven't posted here for days. The above is probably the same guy who posts as H-Monk Brown.

By the look of some of your latest stuff, I can tell that this Ross stuff is becoming quite the obsession. At least you're getting more honest in your postings.

Posted by Greg on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 2:21 pm

It's probably also responsible for many of the macho, anti woman "Guest" postings. Push a fuck-head far enough and you'll find an anti-american fascist lurking and devolving back to reptilian brain.

Posted by Patrick Monk. RN on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 4:33 pm

Don't you have other issues you could weigh in on besides the Ross M/ Eliana L telenovela?

Posted by Lovely Rita Meter Maid on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 1:44 pm

Progressives need to be put in their place. I hate Ross and I'll keep talking about this as long as I want, so STFU! Ross needs to be run out of office whether he's guilty or not! Judge jury and executioner baby!!!

Posted by H. Monk-Brown Cl on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 2:13 pm

your meter has run out. now, don't make me get my ticket book out ;)

Posted by Lovely Rita Meter Maid on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 2:40 pm

** Urgent Announcement **

As of 5:00 pm tomorrow, RamRod will be "occupying" the steam room at Gold's Gym in the Castro. All gay-male-progressives are required to attend. You will be "put in your place" but, don't worry, the bruises will fade.

That is all

Posted by RamRod on Jan. 30, 2012 @ 4:49 pm

Hi, thanks for sharing.

Posted by tiger on Apr. 10, 2013 @ 1:11 pm