A Florida County Judge was punished for ‘Intolerable Behavior’ after she berated and jailed a domestic abuse victim.
Judge Jerri Collins found herself in front of the Florida Supreme Court on Wednesday and was publicly reprimanded on live TV as a penalty for her repugnant treatment of the woman, who failed to show up to her abuser’s trial, according to several news outlets.
Tabooya reported that on April 2015 the victim called for help stating that the father of her child choked her and threatened her with a knife. After he was arrested, the woman began having serious anxiety about the incident and was afraid of confronting her abuser on trial.
Judge Collins told the victim: “You think you’re going to have anxiety now? You haven’t even seen anxiety.”
“I’m just not in a good place right now, I’m homeless now,”the victim replied. I’m living at my parents’ house,” the woman said as she sobbed. “Everything has been shut off. I just sold everything I own.”
But Collins was unmoved. “Violating your court order did not do anything for you,” Collins told the woman in a harsh tone. “I find you in contempt of court. I hereby sentence you to three days in the county jail.”
While being taken into custody the victim cried out: “Judge, I’ll do anything. Please, please!” the woman begged. “I have a 1-year-old son and I’m trying to take care of him by myself. I’m begging you, please, please!”
After the story went public, a plea deal was reached earlier this year with a state agency that “polices” judges and Collins agreed to a public reprimand.
However, last month, the state Supreme Court issued an order stating a public reprimand was not a sufficient punishment. Collins was told her behavior was “intolerable” and was ordered Collins to complete a course in anger management and a course in domestic violence.
“You found the victim in contempt of court and send her to spend three days in jail even though the victim pleaded with you that she needed to take care of a one-year-old child. The victim apologized for failing to appear, citing anxiety, depression and a desire to move on from contact with her abuser as reasons why she did not appear for trial, Meanwhile, Judge Collins, you raised your voice, used sarcasm, spoke harshly and interrupted the victim,” the presiding judge told Collins.
He added: “Judge Collins, this is indeed a sad day for you, a sad day for the people of Florida and a sad day for the judiciary upon which our people depend for justice. I cannot emphasize enough how intolerable your behavior was in this case.”
Watch the video of Judge Jerri Collins being publicly reprimanded below and let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.