Yesterday, the defense rested in the trial of State Senator Hiram Monserrate. The Queens Democrat is accused of slashing his girlfriend Karla Giraldo on purpose in a jealous rage (he and she both say it was an accident) and faces felony charges. Monserrate opted for a bench trial, so Justice William Erlbaum will decide on a verdict; Erlbaum said, "I don’t know how this thing is going to turn out as we sit here today"
Monserrate's lawyer, Joseph Tacopina, told reporters, "There's not a stitch of evidence on this record that explains what happened in that bedroom," where the assault allegedly occurred, "And, you know, obviously, the senator could've gone up there and explained exactly what happened. But we don't need to do anyone's work for them." He also pointed out that Giraldo, who broke down during her testimony, was an unwilling witness for the prosecution and called her a "non-complaining complainant."
Tacopina's website links to a 2007 GQ article about him—1-800-SAVE-MY-ASS (PDF).