Remember New York State Senator Hiram Monserrate, who stands accused of slashing his girlfriend's face? He decided this week to waive his right to trial by jury. The National Organization for Women wants him locked up for a long time.
Now his judge, Queens Supreme Court Justice William Erlbaum, has seen the famous video of Monserrate dragging his bleeding girlfriend from their apartment building, on his way to take her not to the closest hospital but rather to one that he thought was outside city limits, and he might not have shown that tape to a jury, but Monserrate decided not to leave that to chance.
His gravely voiced attack-dog lawyer Joeseph Tacopina says it'd be impossible to get an unbiased jury anyway, because everyone who reads the papers knows what this asshole did, and Tacopina does not want things like "sympathy" getting in the way of a fair verdict.
Monserrate's defense rests on his claim that his girlfriend's face was brutally slashed when he tripped while bringing her a glass of water during an argument, because in addition to being violent he is also dumb.
The New York branch of the National Organization for Women are asking Justice Erlbaum to sentence Monserrate to the maximum sentence allowable by law, which could be as much as seven years in prison. Tacopina thinks this is a terrible injustice, that an activist group would write a letter to a judge, but they are the ones who decided to let a judge decide this, and people are obviously allowed to write whatever they want to judges. In fact we are writing a letter to the judge asking him to consider maybe locking up other members of the New York State Senate after he's done with this one.