OH judge orders man’s mouth taped shut during sentencing

05 August, 2018, 01:54 | Author: Kim Reid
  • Franklyn Williams

OH judge John Russo ordered deputies to shut the mouth of defendant Franklyn Williams after the convicted robber refused to stay quiet.

In December 2017, Williams was convicted of aggravated robbery, kidnapping, theft, misuse of credit cards and having weapons under a disability, Cleveland.com reported.

However, during the hearing, Williams reportedly would not stop talking, ignoring over a dozen warnings from the judge over a period of 30 minutes.

Even after a sheriff's deputy covered his mouth with tape, Williams, 32, kept speaking, saying "It is what it is" through the gag.

"So, when they put the tape over my mouth, I just felt so humiliated", Williams said after the incident.

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A second piece of tape was required soon after to prevent Williams from complaining about the gag.

Eventually, Judge Russo sentenced Williams to 24 years in prison.

The convicted felon previously attempted to evade his trial when he cut off his ankle bracelet during house arrest and fled to Nebraska.

In court on Tuesday, prosecutors played his phone calls with family to prove that not only did Williams not lose his memory, he also researched on his cell the best ways to beat criminal charges.

Fox News said the judge, from Cuyahoga County, Ohio, had been determined to maintain decorum in his court.

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When CNN reached out to Judge Russo, he refused to comment through his bailiff, Patrice P. Stack, who said this is because the case is likely to be appealed.

"You're trying to take my life away, judge, and you're not letting me tell you what's going on".

During the sentencing Russo told Williams, "I'm the judge in the matter. I'm getting no justice, this is not a fair trial". "But more than not, he continued to speak over me and others in the courtroom".

Russo said in court that he had a right to order the gag placed on Williams. "I gave him an opportunity to speak at the appropriate time", Russo says.

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