San Francisco News
Mirkarimi sentenced to 3 years probation
SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- "What happened shouldn't have happened and I am internally deeply sorry," San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi said as he choked back tears Monday after being sentenced in his domestic violence case. However, his future as sheriff of San Francisco is quite uncertain.
As expected, Mirkarimi received three years probation, 100 hours of community service, and 52 weeks of domestic violence and other family counseling.
The legal case is over, but at City Hall the political process has a life of its own. Monday afternoon, Mirkarimi left his fourth floor office and headed down for a meeting with Mayor Ed Lee who has been weighing his options for removing Mirkarimi for official misconduct under the city charter.
At his sentencing Monday, Mirkarimi said he knows he has let people down.
"For what happened on Dec. 31, there are no excuses and I accept full responsibility," he said.
He used words like "shame" and said he was not the person he thought he was. However, Mirkarimi did not explain exactly what happened on New Year's Eve.
Prosecutors say he grabbed and bruised his wife's arm during an argument.
"I'm going to devote myself to repair my relationship with my family, with the people of San Francisco and I am committed to becoming a better public servant -- one you can be proud of, someone who should not hide from their mistakes and demonstrate what it means to go forward," he said.
Last week, Mirkarimi pleaded guilty to misdemeanor false imprisonment in a plea agreement with the district attorney. Monday, District Attorney George Gascon defended the deal.
"We had plenty of evidence to proceed with a trial and it would have been very embarrassing to Mr. Mirkarimi," Gascon said. "We elected not to do so because our intent here was not political nor was it an intent to embarrass him. The intent was to seek a just outcome."
The 800-member San Francisco Deputy Sheriffs' Association released a statement saying, "We are extremely disappointed any time a law enforcement officer pleads guilty of a crime. Morale within the Sheriff's Office has been affected by this incident."
Anti-domestic violence advocates who attended the district attorney's press conference are demanding the mayor remove Mirkarimi from office rather than rely on voters to try to recall him.
"The recall would cost millions of dollars," Beverly Upton with the San Francisco Domestic Violence Consortium said. "Courage costs nothing."
But ABC7 legal analyst Dean Johnson believes trying to toss Mirkarimi for official misconduct would not be simple.
"I think this is going to be a landmark case and I think it will ultimately wind up in the court of appeals or the California Supreme Court," Johnson said.
Mirkarimi emerged from the approximately 15-minute session with the mayor saying that it was premature to talk. The mayor has announced that he plans to say something on the matter Tuesday.
ross mirkarimi, ed lee, crime, san francisco news, carolyn tyler
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