Say Stupid Things During Trial - Win Stupid Prizes
An attorney representing a client already sitting behind bars made jaws drop around the virtual jury room when she up and resigned from her post.
WDRB reports that Louisville defense attorney Shameka O'Neil was held in criminal contempt last week after going off during her client's virtual hearing.
Her defendant, Curtis Burns, was being charged with a misdemeanor for criminal mischief and expressed confusion during the plea agreement, to which O'Neil claimed her client suffers from mental illness.
"It is fine that he has mental illness, but that doesn't mean that we can go through with a plea if he doesn't understand what he is agreeing to," said District Court Judge Julie Kaelin.
That's when O'Neil made a plea to the judge to be removed from the case, citing that her client was unruly and a brat who keeps refusing her help.
"I've been to the jail five times. He's flooding the toilets. He's causing disturbances. He's fighting. He's been beat up," the attorney listed off, saying that her client won't accept the plea deal and that's why she wanted to be removed from his case.
"No, ma'am," answered Judge Kaelin. "That motion is denied." She also expressed shock that the attorney was disparaging her own client.
That went over like a lead ballon because O'Neil fired back, "I bet I don't appear again" and hung up with a defiant "goodbye."
That opened O'Neil up to a contempt motion, which the judge filed. But, in the end, the attorney got what she wanted and was removed from Burns' case.
She also was smacked with a fine and faces 90 days in prison herself if she does not "refrain from committing additional acts of contempt."
O'Neill told WDRB she intends to fight the motion because the judge "disrespect[ed]" her.