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VOL. 40 | NO. 19 | Friday, May 6, 2016

Ordering some much-needed levity in the court

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Counsel: “Have you razed many houses since you’ve worked for the city?”

Witness: “No, sir, but I’ve sure tore down a lot of them.”

For the above and some of the following items, I am indebted to Bill McFarland, longtime court reporter in and around these parts. The quotes in this column represent actual courtroom dialogue, as spoken in a nearby courthouse:

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Mr. Smith. “You’ve been in the hospital?”

Petitioner. “Yes, I had to have to have surgery.”

Mr. Smith: “What type of surgery did you have?”

Petitioner: “I had to have six teeth dug out of my jaw.”

Mr. Smith: “In your mouth?”

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Court: “Did you hit her as she has stated in her testimony?”

Respondent: “Yes, Your Honor, I hit her, but she hit me in my utensils. If she hadn’t hit me in my utensils I wouldn’t have hit her.”

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Petitioner: “… and that was when he hit me upside the head with a 12-pack of beer.”

Court: “Is that true?”

Respondent: “Your Honor, she’s lying. I didn’t hit her with no twelve-pack, I had already done drunk two of them beers.”

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Counsel: “Now, in your own words, tell the judge your name.”

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Witness: “On the night in question there had been a period of precipitation in the area where the body was found.”

Counsel: “Sir, was that precipitation wet?”

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Counsel: “And what kind of work does your husband do?”

Witness: “He doesn’t work, he sells insurance.”

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Court: “You are charged with careless driving. How do you plead?”

Defendant: “Your Honor, I just want to throw my mercy on the court.”

Court: “Well, throw a lot, then. We’re a little bit short.”

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Ms. Jones: “Did you or did you not have insurance at the time of this accident?”

Witness: “Oh, we had insurance. But it had collapsed.”

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Court: “Again, what is the reason you gave for going thirty miles an hour over the limit?”

Defendant: “It was my speed thermometer, Judge. It was broke.”

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Vic Fleming is a district court judge in Little Rock, Ark., where he also teaches at the William H. Bowen School of Law. Contact him at vicfleming@att.net.

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BUILDING PERMITS 0 0 0
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UTILITY CONNECTIONS 0 0 0
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