TV’s Judge Joe Brown Gets Jail Time for Courtroom Outburst


Now Judge Joe Brown knows what it feels like to have the gavel bang in his face.

Joseph Brown, the titular jurist on the long-running syndicated legal show "Judge Joe Brown," was sentenced to five days in jail for contempt after yelling at a judge while representing a client during a child-support hearing in Tennessee, according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

"He all but had that courtroom in a riot," Juvenile Court Chief Magistrate Dan Michael told the paper, describing what went down during a hearing being presided over by fellow Magistrate Harold Horne.

Michael said that Brown, who's running for Shelby County District Attorney, strolled through the hallway shaking hands and asking for votes, but then after waiting in the courtroom for 20 minutes he complained to Horne abut delays.

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Brown then "began a diatribe against Mr. Horne and the authority of the court," Michael said, after which Horne advised Brown that he "needed to desist," but he "continued acting up.''

The 66-year-old legal eagle was led out of the courtroom in handcuffs and booked into the Criminal Justice Center, per the Commercial Appeal.

Brown's five-day sentence, which he'll serve in protective custody given his high-profile, equals one day behind bars per contempt count.

"Joe Brown will be held at the CJC in protective custody segregated from the general population until either he has served his sentence or is released beforehand,'' Sheriff's spokesman Chip Washington told reporters. "If anything changes regarding that I will let you know."

Asked if he thought Brown's antics might be some sort of publicity stunt, Michael said, "Within five minutes there were three or four different attorneys down here seeking to represent him. You can draw whatever conclusion you want to draw."

"Judge Joe Brown," during which the judge settled all sorts of homespun disputes, often with very creative sentences, ran in syndication for 15 seasons before being canceled last year. The show taped in Hollywood, right next to the "Judge Judy" set.

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