Friday, March 16, 2012

Question Authority: Sheriff Mirkarimi's Guilty Plea

I continue to be surprised that San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi's domestic violence scandal hasn't captured the fancy of right-wingers beyond the Bay Area. While the GOP has supposedly been waging some kind of "war on women," Mirkarimi's pre-trial maneuvering led to the revelation that he not only was a cad, but also got rough with other women in the past. Mirkarimi has copped the inevitable guilty plea, and appears poised to keep his job (the local media has already begun the "let's move on" drumbeat), but the DA claims to be dissatisfied

San Francisco District George Gascón said today he is not convinced Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi really believes he is guilty of the misdemeanor false imprisonment crime he pleaded to earlier this week, and will raise his concerns with the judge at sentencing Monday. 
"There is a guilty plea here and I know there's almost an attempt (by Mirkarimi) to deny that this has occurred: 'I didn't really do this. I'm being forced to do this.' That's very concerning to me, to be very honest with you," Gascón said in a meeting with The Chronicle editorial board. 
"We're going to address this on Monday because we're not in the custom, not in the habit, of taking a guilty plea from somebody who is not guilty," he added. "If the defendant in this case believes he is not guilty, then we should go to trial and let a jury decide."

Amazing, especially as Gascon, who used to be chief of police, is undercutting not only Mirkarimi, but also his own deputies who negotiated the plea. 

The biggest joke in all this is that Mirkarimi was elected sheriff to begin with. The guy is a typical San Francisco Green without a minute of law enforcement experience (although he did manage to graduate from the Police Academy). The sheriff's job is to run the jail, enforce evictions, guard the courthouse, etc. It's a serious, workaday job, not the sort of thing you like to see grandstanders and poseurs take on after being termed out of their previous elective office. Having Mirkarimi elected sheriff was unseemly enough, but the current groundswell of support for the idea that everyone should just move on is even less seemly. 

Dems might squawk about GOP "violence" but when one of their own actually manhandles actual women, suddenly the situation is much more "complicated."


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