chadjohnson1-300x239Former standout NFL receiver, Chad Johnson, also known as Ocho Cinco (legally changed his name), is on probation for domestic violence in Florida. He violated his probation and his attorney negotiated a deal for community service. During the sentencing hearing Circuit Judge Kathleen McHugh advised Johnson that his attorney had done a great job for him. Chad agreed and lightly slapped his attorney on his butt. The butt slap was similar to what Johnson may have done to a team mate for making a good play on the football field. Because a few people in the courtroom laughed Judge McHugh was angered and sentenced Johnson to serve 30 days in jail, extended his probation and ordered additional community service.

In my opinion, this judge is out of her mind and is more interested in getting some national publicity then providing a sentence that is meant to serve the ends of justice.

The former reality TV star Johnson has a playful reputation and has been playing a game, football, for most of his entire life. Is it so surprising he complemented his attorney by performing an act he has been doing for most of his life? It may not be appropriate but it is not worth 30 days in jail.

The probation violation could not have been that serious because the judge was about give Johnson a lenient sentence which he likely deserved. He should be sentenced pursuant to the alleged violation of probation and not what happens in court. Slapping his lawyer’s butt does not violate the terms of his probation.

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Acting inappropriately in court is punishable by ruling that he was in contempt of court for which he is entitled to a hearing. The judge acted unlawfully by using that act to increase the probation violation penalty.

Judge McHugh clearly over reacted and this type of judicial oppression and should not be tolerated in any jurisdiction.