At the sentencing hearing for State Senator Hiram Monserrate (D-Queens), who was convicted of misdemeanor assault for slashing his girlfriend in the face, Justice William Erlbaum said that three years probation for the freshman senator—plus a 250 hours of community service, a year of domestic violence counseling, and a $1,000 fine—was "what any other person gets in this situation." Still, Queens DA Richard Brown, whose office was hoping for 60 days in jail, said, "In my opinion, [Erlbaum] should have provided for a jail term
Erlbaum also decided against lifting the order of protection that has prevented Monserrate and girlfriend Karla Giraldo from being together since the December 2008 incident. Though Giraldo told him, "I don't need an order of protection. I want to be with him. I want to continue my normal life... We would like to get married," the Post reports that Erlbaum said, "I am loath to say you can't be together. But a promise alone that Mr. Monserrate will respect her autonomy is a far cry from remedying the green-eyed monster of jealousy... I hope the time will come that Karla Giraldo will have the self-respect to stop acting like a slave."
The State Senate has a committee investigating whether Monserrate should face disciplinary action. According to the Times, "Justice Erlbaum agreed to release transcripts of Ms. Giraldo’s grand jury testimony, but denied their request for copies of other testimonies and documents presented to the grand jury." The committee is "especially interested in finding out what happened in the 37 minutes that it took Mr. Monserrate and Ms. Giraldo to go from his home to the hospital."