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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Ross Mirkarimi's New Lawyer, David Waggoner, Has Beaten Ethics Commission Repeatedly

Posted By on Wed, Mar 21, 2012 at 4:35 PM

click to enlarge David Waggoner, Ross Mirkarimi's latest attorney - LUKE THOMAS, FOG CITY JOURNAL
  • Luke Thomas, Fog City Journal
  • David Waggoner, Ross Mirkarimi's latest attorney

The mayor and city attorney earlier today disseminated their case against suspended Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi -- in writing. It was a curious read; the city attorney has attempted to decouple the notion that "official misconduct" must be committed while "on the job." Lee's assertion is that any elected official who "falls below the standard of decency, good faith, and right action impliedly required of all public officers," is ripe for the mayor's boot.

Unless, of course, it is the mayor.

Our other favorite passage was the allegation that Mirkarimi is guilty of misconduct because he allegedly told his wife "he could win custody of their child because he was very powerful." Apparently it's now a firing offense to be a dick during an argument with your wife. Under that precedent, if Mirkarimi had told his wife he could do her some kind of favor because he is very powerful, he'd be up for termination as well.

But we digress. This is all fodder for Mirkarimi's new attorney, David Waggoner -- not to be confused with his old attorney, Robert Waggener (who called him a "tyrant" and was soon off the case). And you could do worse than hiring this new Waggoner for a trial before the Ethics Commission -- because he's made a cottage industry out of beating them like a piñata.

In 2007, he managed to have the fine against volunteer campaign treasurer Carolyn Knee knocked down exactly 99 percent -- from $26,700 to $267. In 2008, he got former Supervisor Tony Hall, who was facing $240,000 in potential fines, off with a slap on the wrist. And in '09, our more loyal readers may remember him beating charges levied against serial Ethics whistleblower Oliver Luby.

Of course, this may be the most difficult Ethics case handed to Waggoner yet (and Ethics is the city's most ironically named commission). As we noted yesterday, even weak arguments to remove Mirkarimi from office -- he allegedly denied his family food ... and he's responsible for feeding prisoners! -- may suffice, considering the political blowback for anyone who sticks their neck out to keep him around.

Still, it seems hiring Waggoner may be the first good move Mirkarimi has made since this whole affair went public.

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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