Embattled San Francisco sheriff Ross Mirkarimi will appear in court today to face misdemeanor charges of domestic abuse against wife Eliana Lopez. Lopez continues to deny any complaint against her husband, but District Attorney George Gascon decided to go ahead with charges based on the videotaped evidence of neighbor Ivory Madison, and information from Madison and another neighbor suggesting at least one earlier incident of violence. During the arraignment today, Mirkarimi's lawyer Robert Waggener is expected to ask for a "speedy trial," and Lopez's attorney may ask to have the protective order lifted so that Mirkarimi can have contact with his son.
Mirkarimi has said he has no intention of stepping down as sheriff.
According to Gascon, he is not dissuaded by Lopez's lack of cooperation in the case, calling her behavior "very common" in these types of cases, but adding, "The case is always stronger if the victim is willing to testify." Also today, the Chronicle has a whole story about why domestic abuse victims often choose to stay with their abusers, and focusing on Lopez's precarious situation being a foreigner with little or no family support nearby.
We'll update you as news from the courtroom arrives.