Most of us, if accused of a crime, aren't crazy about having our fate decided by a jury (as the old joke goes, it's a dozen people who weren't clever enough to get out of jury duty). But the judge is a different story -- these are seasoned, esteemed experts in the law who have earned their robes by proving their knowledge and impartiality.
Well, most of the time. Sometimes you wind up with one who, let's just say, doesn't inspire as much confidence ...
#5. Judge Sends Courtroom Sexts (and Has Courthouse Sex)
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A picture is worth a thousand words, so instead of telling you what sort of thing Judge Wade McCree did, we suppose we should just show you:
A few inches down and we'd have seen his gavel.
Yes, the Detroit judge texted his way to infamy when he sent a shirtless photo of himself to one of his female bailiffs. To give a sense of the kind of guy we're dealing with, consider that McCree, who also handles sexual misconduct cases, brushed aside the impropriety of his actions with this brazen reply: "Yep, that's me. No shame in my game." And that's just the beginning for the self-proclaimed "king of latex."
When one Geniene La'Shay Mott entered McCree's courtroom to settle a child support dispute, McCree resolved to enter her. After securing a lunch date with Mott through one of her hearings, McCree began a 20-week affair with Mott, during which he used his position on the bench to get nookie in his judge's chambers, assist Mott's relatives in lowering their bond, and, according to Mott, get her pregnant. All while he was still presiding over her case.
Gus Burns/Michigan Live
"'Your honor'? I barely knew 'er!"
For a moment it seemed that all was not completely lost for McCree, who had an ace down his pants in the form of a psychiatrist who said that McCree suffers from hypomania. That's a mental condition that could explain the judge's overly confident statements (which, to be honest, sound kind of awesome) and rash behavior. The commission deciding his fate, however, saw it otherwise, suspending McCree without pay.
But hey, at least he didn't whip out his dick on the bench. Which brings us to ...
#4. Judge Jerks His Junk During Trials
Yes, Oklahoma Judge Donald Thompson violated what has to be one of the first two or three rules they teach you in judge school when he was caught exposing himself during court proceedings. And no, this wasn't just a one-time jerk-and-work -- according to court reporter Lisa Foster, Thompson exposed himself at the bench at least 15 different times between 2001 and 2003. And on at least four other occasions, he used a penis pump.
If we wanted judges to keep it covered, we'd make them wear pants.
To make things extra awkward, this all occurred during jury trials, which means that while attempting to focus on evidence, jurors were being serenaded by the wet whoosh of a handy-dandy dick plunger. One such case involved a man on trial for child murder. Disturbingly, Thompson was heard pleasuring the old flesh gavel every day of those proceedings. When confronted by jurors about the noise, the judge denied hearing it at all, likely because the intensity of his mechanized fapping had dulled all his other senses.
Once caught, the judge attempted to dismiss the claims as a friendly misunderstanding, explaining that the pump was a gag gift that he innocently toyed with during hearings, not some secret pleasure device (not that it could have been much of a secret with all that goddamned noise). However, Thompson had been so ballsy with his stroke-a-thons that he failed to hide his love pump from the prying eyes of a policeman during a fateful murder trial.
NY Daily News
This surprised Thompson, who'd heard that justice was blind.
During a lunch break, officers photographed the courtroom crime scene, and a subsequent investigation of Thompson's robes, carpet, chair, and desk yielded semen. Police had hit the jackpot, earning this crazy chronic masturbator a four-year prison sentence.
#3. Multiple Judges Pulled Guns from the Bench
We have to admit, being a judge probably means constantly wishing you could circumvent all the convoluted legal crap and just whip out a gun. In fact, it's mostly the ability to resist that impulse that qualifies a person to be a judge in the first place. But don't tell that to Florida judge J. Leonard Fleet, who pulled a .38-caliber revolver on a defendant when the man made unruly comments in the courtroom.
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His Second Amendment right.
To be fair, those comments were "If I had a gun, I'd kill that judge." Still, a calmer, saner man would have responded to the remark by charging the guy with contempt of court and getting him out of the room. But Judge Fleet was neither a sane nor a calm man. Witnesses reported seeing him place a single bullet in the chamber before uttering, "There's one bullet in the cylinder. Do you want to take your best shot? If you're going to take a shot, you had better score, because I don't miss." Then he calmly left the loaded gun on the bench for the rest of the morning session, just so everyone would realize he was batshit insane.
Clearly Fleet's courtroom theatrics were out of line, but this was back in the lawless days of 1992 (and it was Florida), so we can maybe give him a pass. We certainly wouldn't find that kind of behavior going on in 2013. It did, however, occur in 2012. In what was perhaps the world's worst attempt at advice-giving, Georgia judge David Barrett pulled his gun on a witness when he decided her testimonial skills were lacking. "You might as well shoot your lawyer," he suggested.
GA Daily News
"If brandishing guns and threatening lawyers is against the law, throw my ass in jail."
We should have mentioned that this woman was testifying as a victim of sexual assault and that her assailant once held a gun to her head. As you probably imagine, Barrett's behavior did not sit well with the other judges, and an inquiry, complete with finger-wagging, followed. The judge, apparently unable to take being in the hot seat himself, opted to resign rather than face continued scrutiny over his disastrous communicative style.