- CRITTER TALK
Judge Bush runs a very tight courtroom where everything runs the way it supposed to, i.e., by the book. He is very much a no nonsense judge and insists that everyone conducts themselves in a very respectful manner. This young man is probably lucky he didn’t get more time than he did. If there is one thing Judge Bush is not its someone’s “home boy”.
MONTGOMERY | An Alabama circuit judge said it was more about respect than wardrobe when he sentenced a man to three days in jail for contempt of court for wearing so-called saggy pants far below his waistline in open court.
“To me it’s not any different than if someone stood up in court and started cussing everybody out,” said Circuit Judge John Bush. “It’s disrespectful conduct and I think as judges we’re expected to at least have some degree of control and respect for the courtroom the people have given us charge of.”
Bush sentenced LaMarcus D. Ramsey, 20, to a three-day stint in the Autauga Metro Jail on Tuesday. Ramsey had appeared before Bush to enter a plea to a charge of receiving stolen property. His case will go to trial sometime after he completes his contempt sentence.
Ramsey’s public defender could not immediately be reached for comment.
Deputy Autauga District Attorney Jessica Sanders is prosecuting Ramsey’s case. She said she thinks the three-day sentence was fair and appropriate.
“Being in court is one of the most serious times to conduct yourself in an appropriate manner,” she said. “This guy was just disrespectful,” adding that his pants were well below his buttocks.
Judge Bush said people don’t often show up in his court with pants below their waistline, but when they do he usually imposes the maximum sentence of five days in jail for contempt of court. He said he wanted to cut Ramsey some slack and only sentenced him to three.
“Used to, back in the olden days, when people came to court … they’d put on their Sunday clothes and try to be respectful,” Bush said. “It’s just the picture of our society right now that they don’t.”
Bush said he isn’t a big stickler on formality. He doesn’t expect everyone who appears before him in court to be wearing nice clothes — but he is a big stickler on respect.
“Not only is it (wearing saggy pants) disrespectful, it’s a disruption to the orderly conduct of court business, and I don’t think that’s the way people are supposed to conduct themselves in court.”
Thanks to Andy Brownfield of The Associated Press.Click here for reuse options!