A man who shouted obscenities at a judge and punched a bench has become the latest person to be jailed for contempt of court.
Sean Hamill hit the bench in the public gallery at Leicester Crown Court so hard that a local newspaper reporter was knocked out of her seat.
He then stormed out of court. Yesterday, as Hamill was jailed for six months, Judge Robert Brown told him:
“The court staff, the press and advocates are very vulnerable to outbursts in court. Such outburst will be punished because those court users need the protection of the court.”
Earlier in the week, university lecturer Theodora Dallas was sent down for six months after being found guilty of contempt of court by three high court judges for researching a criminal defendant while serving on jury. Today she had her leave to appeal to the Supreme Court refused.
Meanwhile, the judge in the ongoing trial of Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp has slapped a contempt of court order on the case, banning the use of Twitter from inside the courtroom after a journalist named a juror on the site.