The criminal case against San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi is winding down, but the political case against him may be only beginning, says the San Francisco Chronicle. Mirkarimi pleaded guilty yesterday to a misdemeanor charge of false imprisonment in connection with an incident in which he allegedly inflicted a bruise on his wife, Eliana Lopez, during a heated argument.
In exchange, prosecutors dropped a domestic violence charge and two other misdemeanor counts filed against Mirkarimi in January, less than two weeks after he was sworn in as sheriff. Mirkarimi, 50, was still serving on the Board of Supervisors at the time of the New Year’s Eve incident. Mirkarimi will be sentenced to three years’ probation, one year of weekly domestic violence batterers classes, parenting classes, 100 hours of community service, and fines and court fees nearing $600. Now Mayor Ed Lee must decide whether to file official misconduct charges against Mirkarimi, which could result in his forced removal from office. “This clearly remains serious and troubling for our city. [ ] I understand the troubling nature that this guilty plea raises, given the sheriff’s role in overseeing and incarcerating criminals in our county jails,” Lee said.