If Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi was hoping to recast himself as a loving husband as part of his defense against domestic violence charges, his attorney, Robert Waggener, isn't doing anything to help paint that picture.
As the Chron notes today, Waggener, in front of a throng of cameras and reporters, told the media that his client perhaps was bombastic (refer to previous Board of Supervisors meetings) and "a bit of a tyrant," from time to time -- but that doesn't make him an abuser.
That's essentially his defense to the latest allegations from Christina Flores, the woman who claims to have been grabbed and pinned against a wall by Mirkarimi when they were dating in 2007.
They "had a relationship. It ended poorly," Waggener said. "But Sheriff Ross
Mirkarimi denies ever having had an abusive relationship with Christina
Still, when you are facing domestic violence charges, being characterized as oppressive doesn't exactly put you in a favorable light.
While Jim Ross, a local political consultant, agrees that calling Mirkarimi a tyrant doesn't help his cause, there's really not a more believable statement for Waggener to make about his client at this point. With Flores now accusing Mirkarimi of abuse, the best thing his lawyer can do is diffuse her comments: acknowledge Mirkarimi might be pushy, but he's not literally pushing people.
"It's his political defense: Yes he's tough. He is
bombastic. He is not shy. He is confrontational -- that will be their public
relations defense," Ross told us.
While Mirkarimi is fighting his case in a court of law, he's also fighting his case in the court of public opinion, which is almost more important, Ross noted. And with this second round of allegations, a pattern has been established, one that says Mirkarimi isn't exactly sweetheart.
"The question we are wondering now ... is there a third?" the consultant added.
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