Ex-S.F. Supe Ed Jew's New Defense: My Brain Hurt

A tired writer could describe Ex-Supervisor Ed Jew's rise and fall as “meteoric” — but, then, meteors don't really rise that often. So let's liken Jew to a bottle rocket — he ascended gloriously before flaming out for all to see and falling back to the earth in singed chunks.

Jew's final descent concludes — so far as we can tell — on Friday, when he is sentenced for extorting $80,000 from San Francisco tapioca-drink store owners. Again, a tired writer would be tempted to describe Jew's tenure in local politics as a train wreck — but not even BART is faring so badly these days. Jew's case had a bit of everything — extortion, flower shop stings, FBI raids, tapioca, and  $10,000 in cash wrapped in tin foil in Jew's refrigerator — in Jew's home in Burlingame. And that brings in Jew's whole non-residency issue, with the cherry on this fetid sundae being homeless cabdriver/mayoral candidate Grasshopper Alec Kaplan being arrested — twice — for harassing Jew, including stints of camping out in front of Jew's Sunset District abode and, supposedly, defecating in a coffee can and leaving it on Jew's porch.

Now, however, we've transcended all that, as Jew's lawyer has said the whole sorry escapade emanates from the fact that the people's choice to represent District 4 is suffering from brain damage. That's right, lawyer Stuart Hanlon played the Severe Head Injury As A Child card.

The accumulation of head injuries, clearly the first injury being the most severe, has affected Ed's functioning in the world,” reads Hanlon's legal filing. “His social naivete and exuberance likely endeared him to people initially, helping him to become supervisor, but ultimately contributed to his downfall when more prudent judgment and impulse control were necessary.”

Boy, it really makes you wonder what lurking childhood traumas are plaguing the current crop of supervisors. There's a medical school dissertation to be had in Chris Daly alone.

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