05 August, 2018
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. Throughout his sentencing hearing, Williams would not stop talking.
Williams kept talking, even as his attorney stood to speak to the court. "More than not, he continued to speak over me and others in the courtroom". Deputies ended up wrapping red duct tape around his mouth.
However, Williams continued to interrupt.
Two pieces of tape were put on by deputies.
However, Williams demanded a new trial after he claimed his lawyer hadn't properly explained what charges he was pleading guilty to, arguing that he had been wrongly informed he would be eligible for early release after he served just seven years, when he actually had to serve his entire sentence.
Judge Russo later told Fox News: "I will say that over my time handling his four cases, Mr Williams, I know for a fact, was someone who liked to speak".
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It didn't get any better for Williams.
"Here you go", the exasperated judge finally said.
"Mr Williams, I'm the judge in the matter". He complained that the judge wasn't letting him tell his side of the court. "More importantly when I was talking", said Judge Russo. On Tuesday, he was sentenced to 24 years in prison after his second trial in the case, according to WJW. "Do you understand what it means to, 'Don't talk?' Don't talk". "Zip it until I give you a chance to talk".
In the 1970 case IL v. Allen, the justices unanimously decided that defendants do not have an absolute right to even be present at their trial, let alone speak at it. "That's what I was trying to tell them", Williams said.
The ACLU of Idaho at the time declined to comment on specifics, but 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".