Monserrate escapes jail term

Monserrate escapes jail term
State Sen. Hiram Monserratte (c.) enters Queens Supreme court with his attorney Joe Tacopina, left, for sentencing on his reckless assault conviction Friday. AP Photo/Louis Lanzano
By Jeremy Walsh

Embattled state Sen. Hiram Monserrate was sentenced to three years’ probation, a $1,000 fine, 52 weeks of counseling and 250 hours of community service in Queens Supreme Court Friday stemming from a misdemeanor reckless assault charge for an incident in which his girlfriend’s face was slashed.

Surveillance footage from the Jackson Heights apartment building where Monserrate lives showed the senator yanking his girlfriend away from a neighbor’s apartment and a doorway on Dec. 19 as he propelled her to the front door for a trip to Long Island Jewish Hospital so that she could be treated for the wound on her face.

Queens Supreme Court Justice William Erlbaum also upheld an order of protection against Monserrate for five years, but he expected that term to be modified “in the near future” if Monserrate shows proof that he is in a counseling program and not violating his probation.

“A promise alone that Mr. Monserrate will respect (Giraldo’s) autonomy is a far cry from remediating the green-eyed monster of jealousy,” Erlbaum told the court.

A teary-eyed Monserrate told the judge said that he no longer believed he was the target of politically motivated prosecutors – a view that he held when he was first charged with assault.

“I’m here because of my own actions and I take full responsibility,” the senator said, choking up.

Monserrate said he was sorry over the harm he caused Giraldo, who has said she plans to marry Monserrate.

“I love her very much and knowing she has endured what she has is something I will have to live with for the rest of my life,” he said.

Monserrate had been found not guilty of felony assault in which prosecutors alleged he intentionally cut his girlfriend’s face with a broken glass.

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