Reporting Tony Aiello
Updated at 12:46 a.m., May 19, 2011
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the head of the International Monetary Fund who was arrested in New York City for alleged sexual assault, has a court hearing scheduled for Thursday morning to seek his release on bail.
A court administrator says the hearing concerns a special application on behalf of Strauss-Kahn. Citing a source, CBS 2′s Tony Aiello reported that the International Monetary Fund chief could be out of prison by Thursday by posting $1 million bail and subjecting himself to electronic monitoring while remaining in the Big Apple.
Late Wednesday night the IMF said its embattled managing director intends to resign, effective immediately.
The IMF’s executive board released a letter from the French executive in which he denied the allegations lodged against him but said that with “great sadness” he felt compelled to resign. He said he was thinking of his family and that he wanted to protect the IMF.
A judge had held Strauss-Kahn without bail on Monday. He has been charged with attempted rape, sex abuse, a criminal sex act, unlawful imprisonment and forcible touching, punishable by five to 25 years in prison.
Strauss-Kahn is accused of trying to rape a housekeeper at a Midtown luxury hotel. The 32-year-old single mother from West Africa says Strauss-Kahn sexually assaulted her when she entered what she thought was an empty penthouse suite at the Sofitel Hotel.
The French politician has been placed on a suicide watch while being held in at Rikers Island. That includes having to wear shoes without laces, a jumpsuit instead of drawstring pants and being placed under increased observation.
“When you come into the system, you are evaluated by doctors, psychologists and they deem it necessary to put a suicide watch on him,” explained Norman Seabrook, president of the New York City Corrections Officers Benevolent Association. “So he’s watched and monitored 24-hours a day.”
Seabrook, who is also a corrections officer at Rikers Island where Strauss-Kahn is being held, says the IMF chief is being treated just like other inmate.
Meanwhile, grand jurors were meeting at Manhattan Criminal Court Wednesday considering indictments against Strauss-Kahn. The 23 grand jurors were expected to hear from all available witnesses, including the alleged victim herself, her co-workers, security officers from the hotel and the medical personnel who examined her at St. Luke’s Hospital.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said authorities were still working the case.
“Detectives investigating this case found the complainant to be credible,” Kelly said.
Two law enforcement officials told the Associated Press on condition of anonymity that investigators were using a piece of hotel room carpet to create a forensic trail in the case.
The officials say the carpet was cut from a place where the maid says she spit after being forced to have oral sex with Strauss-Kahn.
Investigators believe the carpet may contain the financial leader’s semen, which would be crucial forensic evidence that would back up the charges.
Since his arrest, reports began to develop that the accuser was HIV positive, the Post reported earlier this week that she lived in a Bronx apartment exclusively for adults with HIV or AIDS.
But her attorney Jeffrey Shapiro said Wednesday that she was only subletting that apartment and does not have HIV.
“She feels like she can’t go home, feels like she’s been excised from her life, doesn’t know what her future will bring and doesn’t know how she can ever resume a life, much less how to deal with having been assaulted and raped,” Shapiro said.
The defense has also floated a theory that any sex was consensual, something flatly rejected by Shapiro.
‘There was nothing about any aspect of this encounter between this young woman and the defendant which was remotely consensual,” he said.
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