A Maryland judge has been banned from hearing cases after he ordered a deputy to shock a “sovereign citizen” in his courtroom.
The state’s court of appeals issued the order Wednesday, after Maryland’s public defender called for the judge’s removal.
“For a judge to inflict physical pain for the sole purpose of silencing an individual is unacceptable,” said public defender Paul DeWolfe. “In a court of law, it is the judge’s responsibility to protect the rights of those involved in the process, not to violate them.”
Nalley ordered Deputy Sheriff Charles Deehan to administer a shock using a device strapped to a defendant’s leg, according to a report by the Baltimore Post Examiner.
The defendant, 25-year-old Delvon King, was acting as his own attorney and citing sovereign citizen doctrine.
Nalley asked him repeatedly to stay quiet, and he ordered the shock when King continued speaking.
The appeals court order does not specifically reference the shocking incident, but it notes that “good cause” had been shown for Nalley’s removal.
A spokeswoman for the appeals court declined to say whether the ban was prompted by the incident, saying the order “speaks for itself.”
Maryland has a mandatory retirement age for judges, but the court of appeals may allow them to continue hearing cases – as Nalley was permitted since December.