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Exclusive: Prosecutor in Gibson Case Removed

8/7/2006 10:40 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

TMZ has learned the prosecutor who filed DUI charges against Mel Gibson has been removed from the case.

Ralph Shapiro, the Deputy in Charge at the Malibu branch of the D.A.'s office, has been taken off the case. The new deputy D.A. is Gina Satriano, who is currently handling the case against Rodney Alcala, accused of mass murder. In the past, Satriano prosecuted Courtney Love for assault.

We're told the switch occurred late last week. TMZ contacted D.A. Spokesperson Sandi Gibbons, who said the switch "was not the least bit unusual." Gibbons added that supervisors routinely file cases and then are replaced by trial deputies.

TMZ noted four cases to Gibbons in which the Deputy in Charge personally handled a high-profile case -- Shapiro's predecessor in Malibu, Lonnie Peterson, handled cases against Nick Nolte, Nicole Richie. Deputies in Charge also handled cases against Zsa Zsa Gabor and the accused killer of model Linda Sobek. Gibbons responded by saying those were "four cases out of tens of thousands of cases," repeating that it is typical to give cases to "experienced trial lawyers."

Shapiro, who is Jewish, could not be reached for comment. As TMZ first reported, Gibson hurled several anti-semitic comments at the arresting deputy, though the comments are not the basis of the prosecution's case.

96 COMMENTS

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1.

Lisa    

For the Love of GOD TMZ leave this man alone. Stop making a story where there isn't one.

2817 days ago
2.

Beverly Rosoff    

Mel Gibson is a bigot and should not be let off the hook. That he probably learned this garbage from his father is a foregone conclusion. I for one, will boycott all of Mel Gibsons project and never see a movie with him again. By looking the othe way and "giving him a break" it sends a message to everyone who hates, blacks, yellows, tans, hispanics, jews that it is o.k. to do so. It is not. The U.S. has entered a moral bankrupsy phase that should not be condoned. All people that are of good faith and have conscience should boycott him.

2817 days ago
3.

Pony Dog    

In response to the post #1 from Lisa, NO! We won't leave it alone! We left Mel to his own devices and look what the Mad Max Man did! He needs to be discussed and he needs to be prosecuted!!!
It makes me very nervous that Ralph Shapiro has been taken off the case, I smell a "RAT"!!! Mr. Shapiro is Jewish and he's probably "pissed" that the District Attorney is not coming down as hard as they should on Mr. Gibson.
The situation with Mel is very serious, if you don't like it LISA, stick your head in the sand and pretend that it doesn't exsist, but it does and it WON'T go away until it's been resolved my dear! That's the law of the land.
M E L M U S T B E P U N I S H E D ! ! ! If I read one more report from one more celebrity ( Jodie Foster, Patrick Swayse etc..) about Mel being a really nice guy and that he's not a bigot and that he truly loves Jew's, I'm going to JUMP OUT OF THE WINDOW!!

2817 days ago
4.

Lisa    

I'm not sticking my head in the sand about Mel. Yes he did something wrong, but so have we all. TMZ and people like you (#3) need to stop acting like Mel Gibson killed someone. He drove drunk and talked crap, end of story. Let it go already.

Forever a devoted Mel Gibson FAN

2817 days ago
5.

Sam Doe    

But how does Mel feel about homosexuals? He hates them too, right? So he is a hater... Nuf said.

2817 days ago
6.

Joe    

You can't arrest somebody for saying something against Jewish people, nor will "justice" be served for that in a criminal court.
He was arrested for DWI. I can tell you right know what will happen. He'll probably plead down to DWAI or whatever equivalent they have in Cali, like every other person gets a chance to do on thier first DWI. Then this website and many, many other Jewish people in the media will cry cover-up, and then another star will screw-up and Mel will be forgotten.

2817 days ago
7.

Lisa    

Why is it that the people that post on this site act like they have never said a prejudiced thing about anyone? Everyone, even celebrities are entitled to their own opinion. Just so you know Mel never said he hated homosexual and I dare anyone to prove that he did. He made one comment that was blow out of proportion like now ten years ago about homosexuals. For which I might add he apologized for.

Now its nuf said.

2817 days ago
8.

Miguel    

Sorry, Lisa. I've actually never said anything prejudical about anyone.

Not all of us are bigots like you and Mel.

Now is that nuf said or do you need to defend the Jew-hater some more?

2817 days ago
9.

Beverly Rosoff    

I have read the above comments. Just because Mel Gibson apologized is not a reason for people to forgive him. Do you forgive murders or pedophiles who say "I"m sorry." No you shouldn't Mel Gibson should be taught a lesson. The fact that a Jewish prosecutor was removed from his case is outrageous. As I recall, NY state purposely had a Jewish judge for the Rosenbergs who were sentenced to be executed for spying. No, this whole thing smells of a rat to me.

2817 days ago
10.

Lisa    

Wow! What good Christians all of you are. Funny how you want Mel to be punished for doing exactly the same thing that all of you are doing right now.
So let me get this right from all of you God fearing people. When you make a mistake, apologize and ask for help understanding why you said such hateful things you can't be forgiven? Everyone is focusing on what he said instead of the fact that the man has a drinking problem and drove. Stick to the facts of the case and wish him well in facing all of his problems.

Forever a Devoted Mel Fan

2817 days ago
11.

DS    

Why is this news??? Leave this man alone. I'm sure there is more interesting news than what comes out of someone's mouth!

2817 days ago
12.

Betty    

I agree with Lisa; Mel made a huge mistake - drinking and then driving. Drinking is too accepted and obvisously not understood...anyone in their right state of mind would not have done and said what Mel did. Excessive alcohol changes the state of mind...changing personalites, breaking up families, causing deaths yet the state still sells it and makes a profit. Unfortunately police every where deal with drunken people every day hearing what Mel said and worse! We are hearing about Mel because he is a celebrity. I hope that Mel does get the help he needs along with many others in his situation. Thanks to the officer who saved his life and possibly innocent people Mel could have injured/killed. Count your blessings if you do not understand how drinking can change someone as it did Mel!

2817 days ago
13.

Kevin Keckeisen    

Well, what jumped out at me in the first line was the prosecutor's name-- Shapiro, a Jewish name. I thought Mad Mel had bought his way out of getting a Jewish prosecutor..... just like he got out of additional charges for trying to flee the scene and calling a female officer "Sugar Tits".

2817 days ago
14.

scott levy    

l wonder what mel would think if l were intoxicated and said mels religion has people in it that molest young children in his church and ruin some of thier lives.

2817 days ago
15.

Sam Doe    

Sugar tits! He he! Who uses words like that??

2817 days ago
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