Judge jailed entire court...

#1
A judge in US for jailing an entire courtroom because a mobile phone went off and no one admitted it.


A US judge has been removed from the bench for jailing an entire courtroom audience after none of them admitted being responsible for a ringing phone.

Judge Robert Restaino was presiding over a domestic violence case in the city of Niagara Falls in March 2005.

A commission on judicial conduct said Judge Restaino had acted "without any semblance of a lawful basis" and behaved like a "petty tyrant".

The judge has said he was under stress in his personal life at the time.

He has 30 days to appeal against the commission's decision.

In its ruling on Tuesday, the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct recommended the removal of Judge Restaino for what its chairman called "two hours of inexplicable madness" on the morning of 11 March 2005.

It said the 48-year-old judge had been presiding over a series of domestic violence cases when he heard a mobile phone ring and "snapped".

"Every single person is going to jail in this courtroom unless I get that instrument now," he told the courtroom's audience, according to the commission.

"If anybody believes I'm kidding, ask some of the folks that have been here for a while. You are all going."

Security officers then attempted to find the phone but failed.

After a brief recess, Judge Restaino returned to the bench and again asked who had been responsible for the ringing phone.

When no-one came forward, the judge ordered that the entire courtroom audience of 46 people be taken into custody and set bail at $1,500.

"This troubles me more than any of you people can understand," the judge explained.

"This person, whoever he or she may be, doesn't have a whole lot of concern. Let's see how much concern they have when they are sitting in the back there with all the rest of you," he added.

"Ultimately, when you go back there to be booked, you've got to surrender what you got on you. One way or another, we're going to get our hands on something."

One defendant, according to the report, told the judge: "This is not fair to the rest of us."

"I know it isn't," Judge Restaino replied.

The audience and defendants were then taken to Niagara City jail, where they were searched and packed into crowded cells.

Fourteen people who could not post bail were later shackled and transported to another prison.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/7116426.stm

Are all judges bonkers, or was this a good thing to do? I guess they should have been lucky that they they weren't in Texas...
 
#2
Sounds like he needs to come over to this country and preside over some cases, the rest would do him good.
 
#3
Good to see that innocent before being proven guilty is alive and well inthe land of the free!

Not that our upto date, in touch with reality, judiciary is any better!!
 
#6
Was he called Mohammed?
 
#8
scuba_angel said:
Assuming over there will be the same as the UK where phones should be turned off, then it sounds a reasonable thing to do. Although the bail seems a little unfair on the 14 who couldnt pay it.

I'm sure are judges ain't that stupid. Though I'm sure you have to turn you're phone of before you enter a court room.
 
#9
roadster280 said:
OK, who did that? Noone going to own up? Right you fcukers, get your fcuking rifles over your heads. Move to the right in threes, by the front, quick march, breaking into double time, double march....

Ah yes, the basic unfairness of collective punishment makes it so very effective....
Roadster couldn't agree more. Now was it really such a bad thing and could society learn something?

Jockster
 
#11
Cases in Blackpool

There have been a couple of occasions where this has occurred in Blackpool in the last fortnight before a District Judge.
The scrotes in question dared answer their own mobiles whilst stood in the dock.

One hung up immediately whilst the other decided to have a conversation with his mate keeping the court waiting.

Needless to say he was 'escorted' downstairs for a few hours to cool off, whilst he thought over his apology..

How can people be so stupid as not to realize?
 
#13
jon752 said:
scuba_angel said:
Assuming over there will be the same as the UK where phones should be turned off, then it sounds a reasonable thing to do. Although the bail seems a little unfair on the 14 who couldnt pay it.

I'm sure are judges ain't that stupid. Though I'm sure you have to turn you're phone of before you enter a court room.
Even allowing for your Mong spelling - do you really believe the senile, bleeding-heart old farts we've got are any better?! 8O

At least the Septics can vote for their judges, and kick them out when they fcuk up. We are stuck with the useless cnuts until they do the decent thing and die. :x

The only Judge I respect is Judge Dredd! 8)
 
#14
People have all kinds of ideas about the judiciary when they have rarely, if ever, seen them in operation. When you've seen a few civil trials, where they aren't being taped and think they can do what they like, you realise what a lot of them are actually like.

My cop pal got it about right - "They sit there all day going, "You get to buggery, you go to jail, you ......"

Remember the old saying, "Almost any man can stand adversity. if you want to test a man's character give him power".

think that's true, and you see the truth of it every day in the forces.
 
#15
gobbyidiot said:
People have all kinds of ideas about the judiciary when they have rarely, if ever, seen them in operation. When you've seen a few civil trials, where they aren't being taped and think they can do what they like, you realise what a lot of them are actually like.

My cop pal got it about right - "They sit there all day going, "You get to buggery, you go to jail, you ......"

Remember the old saying, "Almost any man can stand adversity. if you want to test a man's character give him power".

think that's true, and you see the truth of it every day in the forces.
I have seen them "in action". I worked security at a High Court. I remember one case where a trial had to scrapped and a retrial ordered, at the cost of at least £100,000....because a judge fell asleep during the trial!
 
#17
The US solution has the potential for real abuse. Low pay means that corruption is rife in some low levels of the judiciary, and there is a danger that out-of-towners always lose cases against locals, because the locals and their relatives vote.

That said, I watched a prog on late night BBC2, OU thing, I think, about local elected judges and this female said that, in essence, you'd be surprised how well people take losing so long as they feel they've had a fair shake.

There's no ideal system, but I think that the system, "M'lud", and basically it is impossible to appeal on matters of fact in civil hearings, is a very corrupting process. P**s me off and I'll find against you on a point of fact and then you're screwed. I don't give a shit about the real impression that the evidence made on me. The same holds true for minor criminal trials. They don't ask themselves, "Has the matter been proved beyond a reasonable doubt?", they ask themselves, "Am I entitled to convict?", which is a completely separate question. Copper says he saw it, if it goes to appeal I'll say that he was entirely credible and reliable and nobody else was, there's an end to it.

Very, very corrupting world.
 
#18
MSSC said:
Personally, I think they get a bad press. And the American solution is just nuts.. I mean, they vote for the town ME too, just sheer nuts..
They get a bad press because a significant percentage are incompetent, arrogant cnuts who do not live in a place I like to call "Reality". :roll:

Public perception is not helped by the fact that judges cannot be fired, no matter how badly they fcuk up. Inspite of paying their wages(and for their many perks) we have no control over them. :x
 

Similar threads

New Posts

Top