Qualifying Mirakarimi's jury

If even a couple of supervisors are recused, the Sheriff could automatically keep his job

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The San Francisco Board of Supervisors formally received the official misconduct case against suspended Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi Sept. 18, starting the clock on the 30-day deadline that the City Charter provides for the board to take action. Board President David Chiu announced a special meeting to consider the case on Oct. 9 at 2pm. The schedule the board had previous agreed to: a 10-minute presentation by the Ethics Commission, 20 minutes by representatives of Mayor Ed Lee (who brought the case), 20 minutes by Mirkarimi's side, a five-minute rebuttal by Lee, public comment (which could last for hours), and then deliberation by supervisors.

The drama-before-the-drama will involve what in court would be called jury selection — Mirkarimi's lawyers want to see if any supervisors should be disqualified from voting.

It's a critical point: It would take at least nine of the 11 supervisors to remove the sheriff, and that number doesn't' change if some are ineligible to vote. So every recusal is, in effect, a vote to save Mirkarimi's job.

And it's an open question whether some supervisors should recuse themselves. They're supposed to be unbiased jurors, and if any of them have discussed the case with the mayor in advance, they might be forced to sit this one out.

Mayor Ed Lee was asked on the witness stand whether he spoke with any supervisors about removing Mirkarimi, and he denied it. But Building Inspection Commissioner Debra Walker said her longtime friend and political ally Sup. Christina Olague told her Lee had sought her input on the decision. Confronted by journalists, Olague denied the charge but said, "I may have to recuse myself from voting on this."

Another possible recusal from the vote would be Sup. Eric Mar, who just happened to be called as a juror in Mirkarimi's criminal case — and thus could have been exposed to prejudicial evidence — before those charges were settled with a plea bargain. There have also been rumors that Board President David Chiu spoke with Lee about Mirkarimi at some point.

Last month, Mirkarimi lawyer David Waggoner told the board that he wanted each supervisor to declare whether he or she has spoken with anyone about Mirkarimi, but the legal team is proceeding cautiously, wary of offending the supervisors who will now decide the fate of their former colleague.

"We're going to respectfully ask each member of the board to state under oath who they've talked to about the case," Waggoner told us.

Normally, jurors would be extensively questioned during the voir dire process, and those who had served on an elected body with a defendant for years would almost certainly be removed from the jury pool, which seems to have been the case with Mar's disqualification on the criminal case. But that's just one more example of how this unprecedented process is anything but normal, with city officials basically making up the rules as they go along.

Comments

Jason Grant Garza ... it is NOW SEPT 26th 2012 ... see comment posted on article ( http://www.sfbg.com/2012/06/19/fixing-sfs-sunshine-problems ) which is STILL AWAITING Bruce or ANYONE from SFBG. Here is part of the comment:
:" my dear Bruce, Tim or SFBG staff ... such concern ... why no contact over what I have for the MINISTRY of SUNSHINE? I have written many comments in your paper and not gotten any calls or inquiries over what I have. As you know, I have a signed confession/settlement agreement ( http://www.myownprivateguantanamo.com ) from the city that LEFT ME FOR DEAD. As you know I have much much much paperwork from YEARS of the SUNSHINE TASK FORCE ... where I ask questions, pointing out failures and rigged process, and recently have IMMEDIATE DISCLOSURE REQUESTS that have NOT even been scheduled. You also state that the SUPERVISORS are closing down sunshine ... (the task force) has not heard cases in JUNE, JULY and NOW AUGUST ... don't the INNOCENT VICTIMS deserve an alternative and why has your paper NOT suggested one? Bruce, MORALS and CONCERN only apply at all times and NOT only when it might sell copy. Why if concerned over FAIRNESS of PROCESS hasn't the SFBG done an article regarding the "OFFICIAL MISCONDUCT" by the four supervisors and asked the appropriate question ... HOW can they sit in JUDGMENT over ROSS ???

Please Bruce ... you were on the TASK FORCE (many years ago) ... why aren't you asking about the RULES and STANDARDS change at ETHICS for a "POUND of FLESH" against ROSS or why are you NOT asking about the "OFFICIAL MISCONDUCT" charges against SUPERVISORS and St. Croix that STILL have not been heard at ETHICS ... yet, they sit in JUDGMENT over ROSS. If the RULES and STANDARDS have changes ... does that mean that all old cases were not properly handled? Why don't you ask Angela (554-5184 Clerk - BOS) why she won;t take my complaint and start an investigation against SOTF? Why don't ask Mr. Wolfe why after the other side (CITY) concedes ... they are NOT held ACCOUNTABLE for the lies and HARM such as my HIPAA matter in cases # 10038 and 11081? Why don't you ask Andrea (clerk - SOTF - 554-7724) why the TASK FORCE has not scheduled two IDRS ... one against JOHNSON, WOLFE and Mr. RUSTOM (from Dec 2011) and the other against GRANT, FISCHER and ANDREA (recently) ?

Please don't disappoint me and followup ...HOW"S about I wait for an answer ... I'll look here for it ... just reply to my comments.

Thank you ... I KNOW you'll LEAD by EXAMPLE."

Ha, ha.ha .... A NATION OF FOOLS DESERVES WHAT IT RECEIVES ....

Keep DRINKING the KOOL- AID .... such CONCERN, SUCH COMPASSION, SUCH UNWAIVERING GOALS ... and most of all SUCH A BLATANT FAILURE ... all meaningless words with NO RESULTS. Oh, I'm sorry ... the GAME SELLS PRINT.

Oh, the MINISTRY of SUNSHINE is STILL CLOSED are ALL VICTIMS just to go somewhere and DIE? What are the VIABLE options ( please don't give false option of go to a lawyer to the poor ) since ALL THE WISE have rushed forward to provide one .... ha,ha,ha.

So Ross got the RUSH job; however, the SUPERVISORS (who committed their OFFICIAL MISCONDUCT before Dec 2011) got a pass ... I mean the VICTIMS have not had their speedy resolution on this matter ... RIGGED is as RIGGED DOES. Now these SUPERVISORS will sit in JUDGMENT over ROSS ... how UNETHICAL is that ??? Truly I am GLAD that SFBG followed up and brought up this EXACT set of facts especially since I have been writing about it in their comment area over months now. Now where was that article regarding the four supervisors "OFFICIAL MISCONDUCT" sitting in JUDGMENT over ROSS ..... go to http://www.sfbos.org/index.aspx?page=11889 and check out case # 11048 ....from 2011. Rigged is as Rigged DOES ....

Posted by Jason Grant Garza on Sep. 26, 2012 @ 5:38 am

There is no basis for that at All. Mar was in the potential jury pool. The most he heard during the voir dire process was who the defendant was, what the charges were, and who were the potential witness. What did he possibly hear during that process that is not in the report from the EC?

If he backs out and takes the easy out, Mar is a complete coward. He needs to make a vote and make it count- one way or the other.

Posted by D. Native on Sep. 26, 2012 @ 2:34 pm

Mar served with Mirkarimi on the BoS's, along with five other supes. That alone should disqualify them from sitting in judgment. If this were a regular jury undergoing voir dire in a court of law, all of them would be disqualified. But nothing surprises me in this circus of a case. Bring on the kangaroo court and let's get the travesty of justice over with once and for all.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 27, 2012 @ 3:55 pm

Mar served with Mirkarimi on the BoS's, along with five other supes. That alone should disqualify them from sitting in judgment. If this were a regular jury undergoing voir dire in a court of law, all of them would be disqualified. But nothing surprises me in this circus of a case. Bring on the kangaroo court and let's get the travesty of justice over with once and for all.

Posted by Guest on Sep. 27, 2012 @ 3:55 pm

The fact that he could have been a juror and was not chosen or was in no way affects his ability to participate as a supervisor in this decision....any questions asked would have referred to his relationship as a colleague that is true of every supervisor...SO what would be the factor that would cause him to be recused that does not pertain to every supervisor? The fact that he learned while in the jury pool are the same as any person would learn of the matter.and have no bearing.That is if he was recused as a colleague that is true of every supervisor.

Posted by thatsthewayitis on Sep. 26, 2012 @ 6:15 pm

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