San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi’s wife said in a videotaped account of his alleged New Year’s Eve attack against her that he had manhandled her on an earlier occasion last year, and that the former city supervisor had warned her he could gain custody of their young son because he was “very powerful,” say court documents reported by the San Francisco Chronicle. Mirkarimi, 50, is awaiting arraignment Thursday on misdemeanor charges of domestic violence battery, child endangerment, and dissuading a witness, stemming from an incident that began after the couple left their home for a New Year’s Eve meal. Mirkarimi has denied the allegations.
A key piece of evidence is a Jan. 1 videotape taken of Mirkarimi’s wife, Eliana Lopez, by a neighbor, Ivory Madison. On it, Lopez is crying and points to a bruise on her right bicep where she said Mirkarimi grabbed her during the confrontation the day before, according to an arrest warrant affidavit. “This happened yesterday,” Lopez says on the video. “Two times in 2011, and this is the second time this is happening. Mirkarimi’s defense attorney, Robert Waggener, said he was aware of the accusation of a prior incident in March 2011 involving the couple. “I know that issue is out there,” he said, “but there’s no domestic violence.”