Tallahassee O Opinion:
Many people have seen the Stupid Florida girl Penelope Soto that flipped off the judge on the bench when he was setting her bail and she said “Fuck You” as walking away in his Miami Courtroom.
This was no doubt very stupid but entertaining to watch on television today as a day time soap opera. Some people are not going to agree with us (on our opinion) in which they don’t know the Constitutional Rights Of Our American Citizens and/or really don’t care about our First Amendment.
You can watch the video below as shown on the news today and numerous stories across the internet the last few days. The girl was obviously very nervous and very well could have been on drugs at the time for all we know. She was flippant, laughing at the judge, and certainly giggly. The judge later set her bail again $5,000 more on her bail at a bench trial just for being nervous and saying “odios” which seems harsh. As the Hispanic girl started to walk off, the judge said “bye bye” and gave her a childish wave, and she said “odios”. It would be speculation by saying that it was a stab at the judges Hispanic heritage in which the girl herself was Hispanic. He called her back, and said that he was now setting her bail at $10,000 instead of $5,000 previously set by him. For what, saying “adios?”. Is saying “adios” now a criminal offense? The girl gets her bail raised an extra $5,000 or $500 (10% of a bailbond) if getting a bailbonds man to bail her out of jail.
Sure, she walked off, flipped him the bird, and said “Fuck you.” No, she shouldn’t have done that and we certainly wouldn’t advise it, but this judge was obviously being a total jerk for no reason, and I can’t really blame her for being mad at him. She legally expressed her frustration of her First Amendment Rights with Freedom Of Expression. We don’t care who disagrees with us at the Tallahassee O. Anyone that disagrees obviously doesn’t know our American Constitution that gives the girl the right to do that regardless if we (or the judge) like it or not.
The main question, though, is whether giving the girl a $10,000 bail for being nervous and saying “adios”, and then sentencing her to 30 days in jail without a jury trial (by a judge bench trial) and without legal representation for cussing is legal. According to this article in Time magazine, no, it’s not:
In that article, the guy was simply given a $119 ticket for flipping off a cop, but it was dismissed because the citation was unconstitutional. How much authority do we allow a judge to have, when he can give someone a $10,000 bail and 30 days imprisonment, without any type of real trial or legal representation?
What happened to the 6th Amendment, that guarantees her the right to a trial by an impartial jury of her peers?
Let’s put this in perspective. Do you remember the case of the guy in college that used a webcam to record his roommate having gay sex, then published it online, which later caused his roommate to commit suicide? He was found guilty of 15 criminal charges, and he was sentenced to 30 days in jail and a $10,000 fine.
Are you seriously saying that this girl deserved a similar and almost the exact same sentence?
Personally, we hope this girl does her 30 days quietly, then sues the judge for violating her clearly established constitutional rights. He needs to learn a lesson just as much as she does. Maybe even more, so that he’ll learn not to abuse his authority on the bench. The judge really should have just ignored the girl…tax payers of Florida should not have to pay for a person spending 30 days in jail based on freedom of speech and freedom of expression. Yes, it’s funny at the time when the judge did this but it’s very tyrant when you really lay out the facts.
The 1971 Supreme Court Case Of Cohen V. California established the rights of citizens to express being disgruntled with the government and questioning the government’s authority.
Cohen v. California, 403 U.S. 15 (1971) was a United States Supreme Court case dealing with freedom of speech. The Court overturned a disturbing the peace conviction of a man wearing a jacket bearing the phrase, “Fuck the Draft.”
Since when did this Supreme Court ruling not remain standing law today!?…it is still the law of the land. We don’t agree with what this young girl did in the courtroom but we certainly don’t want to pay as tax payers for her to spend 30 days in jail for freedom of speech and freedom of expression THAT IS LEGALLY PROTECTED as clearly establlished by the Supreme Court. If the ACLU takes this case for appealing the decision, we have no doubt that the judge would be found to be overstepping his bounds and abusing his authority. The sentencing for the bail increase and the 30-dail jail sentence was certainly overreaching and unconstitutional since we all live in America being that Miami is part of the country as well and not being a third-world country separate from the other 50 states.