Embattled Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi was denied a special request Friday for visitation rights to see his 2-year old son but was granted a chance to make his case in family court on Wednesday.
Mirkarimi is asking a family court judge to modify a stay-away-order issued by Superior Court Judge Susan Breall in the criminal case against him for allegedly abusing his wife Eliana Lopez during a New Year’s Eve argument.
A special emergency request for visitation rights was not granted Friday, but an expedited court hearing was granted for Wednesday, instead of having to wait the customary 16 court days.
Following the decision, Mirkarimi was outside the court house at McAllister and Polk streets and began tearing up as he said, “I miss my son terribly and he misses me.”
Prior to family court appearance, Mirkarimi spoke causally with a number of reporters gathering inside the court room. He said his job as sheriff was helping him through these tough times.
“I try to stay positive in work. I come in early. I stay late. There is great solace in being a head of a fantastic department,” Mirkarimi said. He said he had purchased “Curious George” and “Sheep on a Ship,” children books he was hoping to read with his son.
Lopez filed a declaration Friday in support of Mirkarimi being able to see his son.
“My son Theo is asking for his father every day. He waits for Ross on the stairs in the morning, hoping Ross will be there to take him to school; he runs to the window in the evenings looking for Ross; and the last few days he has been imagining he sees Ross’s car outside,” Lopez’s declaration said. “He is constantly asking me when daddy is coming home.” It also says their son is less social and cries more at day care.
The legal system has ordered Mirkarimi not to contact his wife and child since he was arrested and charged on Jan. 13 with three misdemeanor charges stemming from an alleged New Year’s domestic violence incident.
Lopez has a new team of lawyers. Paula Canny, who has represented such clients as Greg Anderson, the personal trainer of Barry Bonds, and Debora Wald for the family court proceedings.
Mirkarimi’s criminal trail remains scheduled to begin Feb. 24.