Photo Courtesy of Fox 8

Ohio Judge Tapes Black Defendant's Mouth Shut During Sentencing Hearing

An
Ohio judge ordered a convicted robber’s mouth taped shut during his sentencing in a Cleveland court Tuesday.


Franklyn Williams, 32, of Cleveland was convicted of three armed robberies during his trial, but apparently had more to say on the matter as Judge John Russo tried to speak. Williams, not only, spoke over the judge but also his own attorneys despite numerous warnings to remain quiet.

Williams had been complaining about his attorneys before Judge Russo stated: “Mr. Williams, I’m the judge in the matter, shut your mouth and I will tell you when you can talk…If we have to, I will gag you in one second.”

Williams continued to interrupt the proceedings and a few moments later, Judge Russo ordered his mouth to be taped shut. The judge cited the stenographers inability to effectively record the hearing as his justification for the decision.

‘I’m going to tape it, and I’ll unzip it when I want you to talk,’ he said.

As officers approached Williams, he attempted to stand up but was pushed back into his seat. In total, six deputies surrounded Williams as one of the deputies applied the red tape. When Williams continued to speak, the judge instructed deputies to put another piece of tape over his mouth.

Russo claimed his actions were legal. The Associate Press reported that in 2009, an Idaho judge ordered a defendant to be silenced using tape after outbursts.

At the time of the case, the ACLU of Idaho declined to comment on specifics.

However, the organization said “on one hand judges have a right to keep order in their court and on the other the defendants have a right to assist in their own defense and be present at trial.

“Our hope is that judges employ the least restrictive manner of keeping order in their courts.”

The typical procedure to address a disorderly defendant is to find him in contempt or simply, remove him from the courtroom. Many on social media are calling Russo’s actions dehumanizing.

Latest News

KPMG Welcomes New Chief Marketing Officer

Originally published on KPMG.com. Lauren Boyman, an accomplished marketing executive with significant experience leading high-performing customer-focused marketing teams, is joining KPMG as our Chief Marketing Officer. Boyman will lead the national Marketing team and oversee its strategy and objectives, including developing and executing integrated marketing initiatives that differentiate the firm’s…

KPMG Lakehouse

Originally published on KPMG.com. Community and Careers website for KPMG’s new professional learning, development and innovation center in Orlando’s master-planned community of Lake Nona. KPMG is proud to join the greater Orlando and Lake Nona communities with the opening of KPMG Lakehouse, a world-class learning, development and innovation center. KPMG…

AIG’s Brandi Monique Shares her Mentorship Journey

AIG’s assistant vice president Brandi Monique shares the mentor relationships that led her to her success at AIG. Monique defines mentorship as an organic connection — rather than a formal relationship — between a mentor and mentee. Monique says from her early days at AIG, she sought potential mentorship relationships…

anitab.org, adp, women, grace hopper

ADP Recognized for “World’s Most Admired Companies” List for 14th Consecutive Year

Originally posted on ADP.com ADP Recognized on FORTUNE Magazine’s 2020 “World’s Most Admired Companies” List for 14th Consecutive Year ADP, a leading global technology company providing human capital management (HCM) solutions, has been named by FORTUNE® magazine as one of the “World’s Most Admired Companies” in 2020.  This marks the 14th…

Dow named 2020 Best Place to Work for LGBTQ+ Equality

Originally posted on Dow.com and LinkedIn Dow named 2020 Best Place to Work for LGBTQ+ Equality by Human Rights Campaign Foundation Recognition marks Dow’s 15th consecutive year receiving a perfect score on the Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index In recognition of its inclusive workplace, Dow has been named by the Human Rights…

Abbott Earns Workplace Diversity Honor

Originally posted on Abbott.com and LinkedIn Employee survey results rank Abbott among the 100 top U.S. employers for creating inclusive work cultures. Diversity is ingrained in who we are at Abbott. It’s how we innovate and how we collaborate. It’s how we think and how we are. It’s how we…