Judge puts two men from public gallery into cells after “overstepping the mark”

By Adele Forrest | 08/11/2017

Judge puts two men from public gallery into cells after “overstepping the mark”
Judge Roger Thomas

TWO disruptive men were hauled from a crown court public gallery and thrown into the cells for contempt after swearing and talking during proceedings.

Matthew Milburn and Jack Swift (17) were at Sheffield Crown Court yesterday (Tuesday) with two of their friends who pleaded guilty to burgling a newsagents.

Milburn and Swift were reprimanded by Judge Roger Thomas QC for their behaviour in the public gallery prior to the burglary hearing.

When the pair was asked to leave, one of the men could be heard swearing and Judge Thomas ordered him and his friend down from the first floor public gallery into the courtroom.

The two were then put into the dock and the judge ordered the dock officers to take them into the cells.

The surprised pair tried to resist, but the officers overpowered them and pressed the panic alarm for back-up assistance.

Milburn and Swift were held in the cells for around an hour and were brought back before the judge after barrister, Andrew Smith, had spoken to them on behalf of the judge.

Addressing the pair after their stint in the cells, Judge Thomas said: “Mr Smith said he would go down and see you and tell me what that bit of nonsense was about and to see if you would apologise?

“I am not one for standing on any great ceremony here, but when you were asked twice or thrice (to be quiet) and then you persisted and used bad language walking out of court you overstepped the mark.

“I do need to run a sensible court here in dealing with serious cases.”

Mr Smith said the men were remorseful and “understood the point”, adding: “They do understand this is a place for serious business.”

Judge Thomas released the pair without any further action, adding: “Point made and that will be the end of it.

“If you come to court it’s perfectly fine for you to be here - this is public business, it’s open justice.

"People can come along and see what’s happening – but when you do come you need to adopt a sensible approach to it.”



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