Man jailed for wearing sagging pants in court

Published: Apr. 12, 2012 at 2:25 AM CDT|Updated: Apr. 22, 2012 at 2:25 AM CDT
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Lamarcus Ramsey. Courtesy: Autauga County Sheriff's Department
Lamarcus Ramsey. Courtesy: Autauga County Sheriff's Department

PRATTVILLE, AL (WSFA) - An Autauga County man facing a charge of receiving stolen property is spending 3 days behind bars, not for that crime, but for wearing sagging pants in the courthouse.  Lamarcus Ramsey, 20, of Prattville, was found in contempt of court.

"It shows a general lack of respect for themselves, for others and the general institution of the court," said Judge John Bush, of the 19th Judicial Circuit.  "These courtrooms belong to the people of this state.  And the citizens of the 19th Circuit expect me to preserve dignity and respect in their courtroom."

The judge's decision is the talk of the courthouse and beyond.

"We've had some dress code problems before, but never anyone put in jail especially for the saggy pant issue," said Whit Moncrief, the Autauga County Circuit Clerk.

Court specialist Vicky Lackey said a noisy courtroom went quiet when the judge made his decision.

"They were talking amongst themselves, after he found them in contempt," Lackey said.  "Nobody else scurried around."

Lackey said Ramsey was out on bond, and was only scheduled for a plea hearing on a receiving stolen property charge. If his pants had pulled up, she said, he could have walked out of court.  Instead he ended up in jail.

"And he said when you come before him again that he needed to have a belt…and some pants that fit."

Judge Bush said he's found people in criminal contempt of court in the past, and would not hesitate to do so again, if the situation warranted.

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