A judge in Lake County, Indiana, held three people in contempt of court on Wednesday after someone's cell phone rang during the morning court call. It was apparently the third ringing incident that morning, and Judge Boswell was able to determine that the ring had come from a particular row of spectators, but not to identify the actual ringor. When she asked them whose phone it was, they all refused to say.
That show of solidarity got them all prime seats for the rest of the morning court call, in the chairs normally reserved for inmates who have been brought to court. They had to sit there for more than an hour until the court call ended, and then were questioned by the judge about the ringing. Since three of the five were found in contempt, I assume Judge Boswell went down the line until somebody finally cracked and the judge learned who the culprit was.
One of the three admitted her phone was one of those that rang, but that she had not volunteered that information. The judge fined her $100. That was in lieu of the 40 hours of community service assigned to the other two, one of whom actually said he had two phones, one of which the judge had heard powering down. The last of the three got community service because she admitted she knew whose phone it was, but said nothing. (I conclude from this that community service equates to $2.50 an hour.)
"The next time you come to court," Judge Boswell told them, "don't bring your cell phone. And when the court asks a question, answer the question." Good rules of thumb to remember.
Link: AP via My Way News