mirkarimi_defendantsname.jpg5:15 PM: San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi met this afternoon at City Hall with Mayor Ed Lee, whose office says the mayor plans to make an announcement regarding Mirkarimi’s domestic violence case on Tuesday.

Mirkarimi, 50, was sentenced earlier today to three years’ probation after pleading guilty last week to misdemeanor false imprisonment in connection with a Dec. 31 incident in which he allegedly grabbed the arm of his wife during an argument.

Along with the probation term, Mirkarimi was also sentenced to 100 hours of community service, nearly $600 in fines and fees, 52 weeks of domestic violence counseling and other family counseling if deemed appropriate by the city’s adult probation department.

Lee said last week he is considering his options under the city charter, which allows the mayor to suspend the sheriff for official misconduct.

The charges would prompt a hearing by the city’s Ethics Commission, which would then make a recommendation to the Board of Supervisors. At least nine of 11 supervisors would then need to approve the charges for Mirkarimi to be ousted from office.

Mirkarimi went into the mayor’s office late this afternoon for a brief meeting with Lee.

After about 15 minutes, Mirkarimi briskly walked out of a side door of the mayor’s office on the second floor of City Hall and up the stairs to his office on the fourth floor. He declined to talk about the meeting to reporters who ran after him.

“It’d be premature for me to talk,” he said.

Mayoral spokesman Francis Tsang also declined to say what was discussed at the meeting, but said Lee plans to make an announcement about the case on Tuesday.

Mirkarimi had fought back tears earlier today while speaking to the media following his sentencing.

“I deeply and humbly apologize for my behavior and the pain it caused to my wife and son,” he said. “For what happened on Dec. 31, there are no excuses. I accept full responsibility.”

Beverly Upton, executive director of the San Francisco Domestic Violence Consortium, a network of 17 local agencies, said she thought the apology was “too little, too late” and called on the mayor to suspend Mirkarimi.

While Mirkarimi faces possible action by Lee, he also is dealing with discord from within his department.

Mirkarimi said today that the sheriff’s department “has been running right and well amid my personal strife.”

However, a statement released this afternoon by San Francisco Deputy Sheriffs’ Association President Don Wilson suggests otherwise.

Wilson said, “We are extremely disappointed any time a law enforcement officer pleads guilty of a crime” and said “morale within the department has been affected by this incident.”

Mirkarimi is also not allowed to carry a firearm while a stay-away order is in effect preventing him from contacting his wife.

That order will remain in effect until a judge removes or modifies it once he begins his domestic violence counseling, Mirkarimi’s defense attorney Lidia Stiglich said.

Mirkarimi will have to attend probation orientation at the adult probation department on Thursday and will return to court on April 6 to prove he has enrolled in domestic violence counseling.

3:20 PM: San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi was sentenced today to three years’ probation in connection with a domestic violence case involving his wife on New Year’s Eve.

Mirkarimi, 50, pleaded guilty last week to misdemeanor false imprisonment in a deal with prosecutors, who agreed to drop three other charges stemming from the Dec. 31 incident in which he allegedly grabbed the arm of his wife, Eliana Lopez, during an argument.

He was sentenced today to the probation term, as well as 100 hours of community service, nearly $600 in fines and fees, 52 weeks of domestic violence counseling and other family counseling if deemed appropriate by the city’s adult probation department.

He was also sentenced to a day in county jail, but received credit for the day he served when he was charged and arrested in the case in January.

Mirkarimi fought back tears as he addressed a throng of reporters outside the courtroom after this morning’s hearing.

“I deeply and humbly apologize for my behavior and the pain it caused to my wife and son,” he said. “For what happened on Dec. 31, there are no excuses. I accept full responsibility.”

He said the case has been “a very public reminder that I’m not the person that I thought I was.”

He said he has already started counseling “to address my arrogance and anger issues” and looks forward to the other counseling required by the court.

Lopez was not in court for today’s sentencing and her attorney Paula Canny was not immediately available for comment.

Lopez had denied the charges against her husband, but recounted the incident to a neighbor, who took a video of her talking about it and later called police.

Mirkarimi, who became sheriff in January after serving for seven years on the Board of Supervisors, today also apologized to his colleagues at the sheriff’s department and the public.

“I know how deeply I have let the people down,” he said. “What happened shouldn’t have happened. I am eternally, deeply sorry.”

District Attorney George Gascon held a separate news conference this afternoon about the case.

Gascon said he is comforted that he has gotten angry feedback from people with differing viewpoints–those who saw the case as a political witch hunt, and those who thought Mirkarimi should have gotten a stiffer sentence.

He said the mixed reactions show he hasn’t politicized the case.

“The outcome of this case may have disappointed the ideologues on both sides,” he said.

Gascon emphasized that “false imprisonment is a domestic violence charge,” one that is commonly agreed to in similar cases.

Domestic violence victim advocates also attended the district attorney’s news conference and called on Mayor Ed Lee to suspend Mirkarimi as sheriff.

Under the city charter, the mayor has the option of suspending the sheriff for official misconduct, which would prompt a hearing by the city’s Ethics Commission, which would then make a recommendation to the Board of Supervisors.

At least nine of the 11 supervisors would then need to approve the charges for Mirkarimi to be ousted from office.

Beverly Upton, executive director of the San Francisco Domestic Violence Consortium, a network of 17 local agencies, said she thinks the mayor should show courage by suspending Mirkarimi and avoiding a potentially costly recall campaign.

“A recall would cost the taxpayers millions of dollars, and courage doesn’t cost anything,” Upton said.

Lee has said he is considering his options and is consulting with the city attorney’s office. He was not immediately available for comment today and is planning a trip out of town later this week, according to the mayor’s office.

In his comments outside of court, Mirkarimi also apologized for calling the case “a private matter, a family matter” during his inauguration ceremony on Jan. 8.

“I never thought it was,” he said. “If I had ever suggested it, it was a mistake.”

The comments inspired a billboard campaign by the group La Casa de las Madres.

Upton said she accepts Mirkarimi’s apology, but said “it shouldn’t take a billboard campaign to get someone to be accountable for his words.”

Mirkarimi also insisted today that the sheriff’s department “has been running right and well amid my personal strife,” but a statement released this afternoon by San Francisco Deputy Sheriffs’ Association President Don Wilson suggests otherwise.

Wilson said, “We are extremely disappointed any time a law enforcement officer pleads guilty of a crime” and said “morale within the department has been affected by this incident.”

Mirkarimi will return on Thursday for an orientation meeting at the adult probation department and will also be required to return to court on April 6 to prove he has enrolled for probation.

The stay-away order preventing Mirkarimi from contacting Lopez will remain in effect until a judge removes or modifies it once he begins his domestic violence counseling, Stiglich said.

He will not be allowed to carry a firearm while that order is in effect, she said.

Mirkarimi said, “I so badly want to reunite with my family, to rebuild with my wife. I cannot tell you how much I miss her.”

11:55 AM: San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi fought back tears as he apologized this morning after being sentenced to three years’ probation for a misdemeanor charge in his domestic violence case.

Mirkarimi, 50, pleaded guilty last week to a misdemeanor count of false imprisonment in a deal with prosecutors, who agreed to drop three other charges stemming from a Dec. 31 incident in which he allegedly grabbed his wife’s arm during an argument.

He was sentenced today to the probation term, as well as 100 hours of community service, nearly $600 in fines and fees, 52 weeks of domestic violence counseling and other family counseling if deemed appropriate by the city’s adult probation department.

Mirkarimi’s voice quavered as he addressed reporters outside the courtroom after this morning’s hearing.

“I deeply and humbly apologize for my behavior and the pain it caused to my wife and son,” he said. “For what happened on Dec. 31, there are no excuses. I accept full responsibility.”

He said the case has been “a very public reminder that I’m not the person that I thought I was.”

He said he has already started counseling “to address my arrogance and anger issues” and looks forward to the other counseling required by the court.

Mirkarimi, who became sheriff in January after serving for seven years on the Board of Supervisors, also apologized to his colleagues at the sheriff’s department and the public, saying, “I will work so much harder so I can regain the trust that I obviously have lost.”

Mirkarimi’s future as sheriff remains in doubt, as Mayor Ed Lee said last week that he is considering the options available to him under the city charter.

The mayor has the option of suspending the sheriff for official misconduct, which would prompt a hearing by the city’s Ethics Commission, which would then make a recommendation to the Board of Supervisors.

Nine of the 11 members of the board would then need to approve the charges for Mirkarimi to be ousted from office.

Mirkarimi insisted today that the sheriff’s department “has been running right and well amid my personal strife” and has said he has no plans to step down.

Judge James Collins ordered Mirkarimi to return on Thursday for an orientation meeting at the adult probation department. He will also be required to return to court on April 6 to prove he has enrolled for probation.

The stay-away order preventing Mirkarimi from contacting his wife, Eliana Lopez, will remain in effect until he begins his domestic violence counseling, Mirkarimi’s defense attorney Lidia Stiglich said.

He will not be allowed to carry a firearm while that order is in place, Stiglich said.

She said Mirkarimi is already looking into his counseling options.

“We want to get that process moving,” she said.

Prosecutors declined comment on the sentencing outside of court.

District Attorney George Gascon has planned a news conference this afternoon to discuss the case.

Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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  • Greg Dewar

    The people voted this guy in, it should be the people who kick him out. A recall would not cost a lot of money since it could be held during a regular election cycle. Plus, I think if you had people out there on the streets with a petition that is legit, getting it signed would NOT be difficult.

    Trust me, the cost to run the actual campaign would not be much and there’d be funding. Let’s let the people decide, and I can tell you, it’s pretty obvious what they’d decide.

  • Greg Dewar

    The people voted this guy in, it should be the people who kick him out. A recall would not cost a lot of money since it could be held during a regular election cycle. Plus, I think if you had people out there on the streets with a petition that is legit, getting it signed would NOT be difficult.

    Trust me, the cost to run the actual campaign would not be much and there’d be funding. Let’s let the people decide, and I can tell you, it’s pretty obvious what they’d decide.

  • renegade

    If not for this ordeal, Mirkarimi would have been all over the map about changes to the Sheriff’s Dept., and would have been very public and accessible about what he’s doing and his plans. Instead, we get a dude who locks himself up in his cage and probably spends most of his work time on his case. As sheriff, has he done anything?

    The Board will decide his fate. Unfortunately each board member’s vote is political, so they aren’t very reliable and will cast a decision according to their own narcissist benefits and payola.

    The Mirkarimi we once knew no longer exists. Even if he’s able to keep his job, after his first and only term he will be unemployable and marked. He’s dirt.

  • renegade

    If not for this ordeal, Mirkarimi would have been all over the map about changes to the Sheriff’s Dept., and would have been very public and accessible about what he’s doing and his plans. Instead, we get a dude who locks himself up in his cage and probably spends most of his work time on his case. As sheriff, has he done anything?

    The Board will decide his fate. Unfortunately each board member’s vote is political, so they aren’t very reliable and will cast a decision according to their own narcissist benefits and payola.

    The Mirkarimi we once knew no longer exists. Even if he’s able to keep his job, after his first and only term he will be unemployable and marked. He’s dirt.