A lawyer for the Sofitel Hotel maid who says Dominique Strauss-Kahn tried to rape her on May 14 has sent an official letter to the New York District Attorney's Office asking district attorney Cyrus Vance to recuse his office from the case and appoint a special prosecutor. "District Attorney Vance, we ask in earnest that your office voluntarily recuse itself from the Strauss-Kahn case and that you appoint a special prosecutor," reads the letter, which Reuters obtained shortly after attorneys for both the prosecution and defense met to decide on how to proceed with the case. It's a little unclear how much weight such a request might carry. While the maid is the one who brought the complaint to law enforcement, it's "the people" of New York who are pursuing the prosecution.

Kenneth Thompson, the attorney who reportedly wrote the letter, savaged Vance and his team in his remarks outside the courthouse last Friday, following the hearing at which Strauss-Kahn was released on his own recognizance. Prosecutors Joan Illuzzi-Orbon and Artie McConnell had just delivered a letter detailing the accusing witness's history of dishonesty. "We believe Cy Vance does not want to prosecute this case because he is afraid he will lose," Thompson said on Friday. He accused the prosecutors of badgering his client and yelling at her in a meeting while he was out of town.