Joseph Schell Photography

Apr 18

The Mirkarimi Saga: San Francisco’s Sheriff’s fall from grace


Just after the New Year I get a call from the SF Examiner for “special assignment”. Basically the assignment went something like this “Domestic violence charges have been brought against our newly elected sheriff and we want you to follow him around until he either turns himself in or is arrested. Best case scenario you get a photo of the sheriff being arrested in handcuffs.”


My first night staking out his home I settle across the street from his home, listening to NPR and eating a burrito. About half way through the wrap i spot him coming out of his house and heading to his car, I quickly set down my burrito and lurch out of my parking space only to launch my burrito, chips and salsa across my lap and onto the floor. After a series of three point turns, I’m headed in the same direction as the sheriff, tailing him a couple cars back. I’m thinking to myself that I may have a natural knack for being a private eye. For those of you who don’t know, I drive a ’86 Nissan truck, although it’s a great little truck it was no match for the sheriff’s Lexus. Several miles, intersections and salsa spilling corners later, I’ve completely lost my subject and am left with no leads what so ever.


Long story short, I spent three days following the sheriff around when he finally just turned himself in outside of his office. Enjoy the photos from several court dates, stakeouts and other assignments. At the time of publishing the sheriff had been relieved of duty and was fighting the mayor to get his job back.


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