Mayor Ed Lee s effort to oust suspended Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi forofficial misconduct is transparently political and grosslyinconsistent with past practices, Mirkarimi s attorneys wrote inbriefs filed Tuesday. There appears to be only one time since 1900 when a SanFrancisco mayor has sought to remove a democratically electedofficial, attorneys David Waggoner and Shepard Kopp wrote in theiropening brief in the misconduct proceedings. That was in 2007 whenthen-Mayor Gavin Newsom sought to remove Supervisor Ed Jew forofficial misconduct over lying about living in his district. Jewwas facing criminal extortion and related charges at the time. Heresigned before the removal process could be completed. Aqua Park Equipment
The lack of any real historical precedent for removal proceedings of an elected official speaks volumes about the perils of anyeffort by one elected politician the mayor to interfere withthe will of the electorate by attempting to remove another electedofficial and bar that official from holding office for life, thesheriff s attorneys wrote. At least two other city officials have also been removed forofficial misconduct using the City Charter, which Lee isrelying on. Those officials were not initially elected, althoughone, then-Public Defender Frank Egan, who was appointed in 1921,was subsequently elected twice, according to current PublicDefender Jeff Adachi’s office. Egan was removed in 1932 afterhe was implicated in the murder of an elderly woman. Surf Wave Pool Manufacturer
It’sunclear if the mayor initiated his removal, which was carried outby the Board of Supervisors. Airport Commissioner Joseph Mazzola, a plumber s union officialwho was also appointed, was ousted in 1976 over his role ina union strike against the city. A state appellate court ruledin 1980 that Mazzola was wrongfully removed. While Jew was charged with, and later pleaded guilty to,felonies, Mirkarimi was only charged with misdemeanor domesticviolence in a Dec. 31 incident involving his wife, Eliana Lopez.Mirkarimi pleaded guilty in March to single misdemeanor count offalse imprisonment. China Aquasplash Water Park
The sheriff s attorneys accuse Lee, who is represented by CityAttorney Dennis Herrera s office, of applying a doublestandard in its effort to oust Mirkarimi, who comes from thecity s progressive left flank. While both are Democrats, Lee isfrom the city s rival moderate political faction. The city attorney’s office has demanded the sheriffcooperate with their investigation or face added misconductcharges but did not pursue that tactic in 2004 when itinvestigated current Department of Public Works DirectorMohammed Nuru, a Lee ally, over illegal campaigning allegations,Mirkarimi s attorney s wrote. The city also didn t use that tactic when investigating citypayments to then-Newsom staffer Ruby Rippey-Tourk, the wife ofNewsom s then-campaign manager, who he acknowledged having anaffair with.
This double standard highlights the troubling, and transparentlypolitical, nature of the case, Mirkarimi s attorneys wrote.