Mike Carona's lawyers came to federal court this morning, claimed that federal prosecutors in the ex-sheriff's case are more of a threat to society and pleaded with a judge to give the top cop turned convicted felon a break: allow him to remain free pending an appeal of his conviction.
But federal prosecutor Ken Julian said it would send the wrong message to society if "a guilty, corrupt public official" wasn't sent to prison in a timely manner.
U.S. District Court Judge Andrew Guilford listened patiently to Julian and to defense lawyers, and late this afternoon rejected Carona's request.
Carona's lawyers indicated during this morning's hearing that if they lost the motion they would file an emergency appeal to the Ninth Circuit.
If higher courts agree with Guilford, Carona must surrender to federal prison officials in late July to begin serving a 66-month sentence for sabotaging a grand jury investigating corruption at the top of the Orange County Sheriff's Department.
But, hey, how about this for a real miracle: For once, the ex-sheriff wasn't seen leaving the Ronald Reagan Federal Courthouse wearing a smug mug and laughing.
--R. Scott Moxley / OC Weekly