Judge orders man's mouth to be taped shut during sentencing

Aug 05, 2018, 01:57
Judge orders man's mouth to be taped shut during sentencing

OH judge John Russo ordered court deputies to shut the mouth of defendant Franklyn Williams during his sentencing hearing at the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court on Tuesday. Franklyn Williams just began serving a 24-year prison sentence for his conviction on armed robberies and other charges.

Judge John Russo ordered that Franklyn Williams's mouth to be taped over to prevent him from speaking after warning him to be silent at least 12 times over the course of 30 minutes. "Listening to the duct tape go pffffttttt, I still here that at night", Williams said.

The Cuyahoga County judge, fed up, ordered deputies to tape the defendant's mouth shut.

"You tryna take my life, and you not letting me tell you what's going on", Williams clapped back in rebuttal.

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Even that didn't stop him, so the judge told deputies to add another piece of tape. In the first trial, he pleaded guilty and received a 14-year prison sentence.

His trial began late previous year, but hit a snag when he cut his ankle bracelet.

"At this point, I'm going to hear from your lawyers, and that means zip it", said Russo. "More importantly when I was talking", Judge Russo told Fox 8 after the trial.

Russo said in court that he had a right to order the gag placed on Williams.

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After warning Williams multiple times, Judge John Russo chose to take action, reported Fox 8.

Later, the frustrated judge asked: "Does the comment, 'quit talking, ' do you understand that?" "I gave him an opportunity to speak at the appropriate time. I'm getting no justice, this is not a fair trial". "That's what I was trying to tell them", Williams said.

The court found that trial judges could "bind and gag him as a last resort, thereby keeping him present; (2) cite him for criminal or civil contempt; or (3) remove him from the courtroom, while the trial continues, until he promises to conduct himself properly", if a defendant was being disorderly.

Here though, there were no attempts to remove Williams from the court and instead a gag was enforced.

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