Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi Gets New, "Impartial" Judge for Trial
|Photo by Luke Thomas|
|The couple in happier times|
According to new outlets, Mirkarimi appeared in court this morning with his attorney, Lidia Stiglich, who claimed that Judge Susan Breall, who has barred Mirkarimi from seeing his wife and son, would be biased against her client.
Breall had issued a stay-away order for Mirkarimi, preventing him from seeing his wife, Eliana Lopez, and their 2-year-old son, Theo, until after the trial, which starts today. Mirkarimi went back to court last month to fight the order; however, Breall denied his request to see his family, citing the child endangerment charges he was facing. Mirkarimi went to family court and later won limited, supervised visits with his son, but is still unable to see his wife.
Mirkarimi's case has now been assigned to Judge Garrett L. Wong. The sherriff will appear in court later this afternoon for the start of his trial, though the actual proceedings will not begin until next week.
Wong is expected to consider a motion Stiglich filed earlier this week, in which she argued that statements Lopez made to neighbors Ivory Madison and Callie Williams in the days after the New Year's Eve incident should not be admissible in court.
The video on which Lopez allegedly made these statements is key to the prosecution's case; without it, the District Attorney's Office would have a hard time moving forward with their case, Assistant District Attorney Omid Talai told reporters this morning. According to prosecutors, Lopez had her neighbor video tape her detailing the alleged domestic abuse that took place during a New Year's Eve argument with her husband.
A few days after being sworn in as San Francisco's new sheriff, he was arrested and charged with three misdemeanors, including battery, child endangerment, and dissuading a witness.
Follow us on Twitter at @SFWeekly and @TheSnitchSF