August 17, 2022

Legal professional held in contempt of court, arrested right after he remaining to characterize one more client | Courts

A protection attorney was held in contempt of courtroom and booked into the New Orleans jail Thursday following he unsuccessful to seem in court docket previously in the 7 days for a scheduled murder demo.

The trial, which was slated to kick off Monday, was finally ongoing following other defense lawyers questioned for much more time to put together and a witness who was in medical procedures was unavailable to testify.

Felony District Court Judge Kimya Holmes

Orleans Parish District Felony Court Decide Kimya Holmes asked Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Place of work deputies to arrest Stavros Panagoulopoulos just after he failed to show up in court for the scheduled demo of his customer, Christopher Patterson. Patterson, alongside with co-defendant Gerald Barnes, is charged with second-degree murder in the April 2018 capturing loss of life of 23-yr-old Alfred Johnson.

Panagoulopoulos left Holmes’ courtroom Monday characterize a further defendant in a individual murder demo in Jefferson Parish — the trial of Leonidas Lowry, charged with 2nd-diploma murder in the 2016 slaying of Ethan Allen in Gretna. Voir dire, or jury assortment, experienced started in that demo and Panagoulopoulos’ desired to go to, claimed protection Anthony Angelette, who also signifies Lowry.

But just after learning Panagoulopoulos was in one more demo, a court docket transcript exhibits that Holmes replied, “That’s not my issue,” before demanding that the trial go forward.

She asked deputies to “go come across Mr. Panagoulopoulos,” including that, “if he has to occur listed here in handcuffs, I really do not treatment.” Holmes then prompt Panagoulopoulos’ absence was a racial slight.

“All I’m declaring is this,” Holmes explained to the court. “If I was a white male or a white female, I’m pretty sure the cure I would be obtaining from the protection lawyers would be diverse.”

Subsequent his contempt of court docket listening to Thursday, Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Place of work records display Panagoulopoulos was booked into jail on a 24-hour keep. He was also fined $100.

In a ruling submitted Thursday, Holmes wrote that courtroom personnel texted Panagoulopoulos to check with him to return to court docket, but he declined, indicating that “he was necessary to go to a different issue.” Court staff also texted Panagoulopoulos to inform him that an attachment experienced been issued for his arrest, in accordance to the ruling.

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Lawyer Barry Ranshi, who represented Panagoulopoulos at Thursday’s hearing, declined to comment. 

Holmes did not return phone calls and emails for remark Thursday afternoon. In her ruling, Holmes wrote that Panagoulopoulos “exhibited insolence, unprofessionalism and a willful disregard for the get of this court.”

Monday’s courtroom transcript implies that Holmes was concerned about advancing Barnes’ and Patterson’s demo, which had been established and moved a number of situations considering the fact that their arrests virtually 4 years in the past.

“I was elected to shift this docket. I consider this person deserves his working day in court docket,” Holmes explained, referring to Barnes, and addressing her responses to Barnes’ lawyers, community defenders Brian Woods and James Miller. “I believe the victim’s relatives deserves their day in court.”

Woods and Miller, even so, requested for a continuance soon after a plea deal with prosecutors fell apart soon in advance of the trial. Assistant District Lawyer Samantha Stagias joined their ask for.

“We had been all less than the effect we were being likely to go forward with that plea now,” she claimed.

The trial was ongoing and reset for April immediately after Households learned that a witness, a law enforcement officer, was in medical procedures and would be unavailable to come to court docket to testify all 7 days.

In her ruling Thursday, Holmes wrote that Panagoulopoulos’ client, Patterson, was “prevented from obtaining his jury demo because of to the habits of Mr. Panagoulopoulos, who unilaterally and with no the court’s authorization chose to depart.”

Editor’s Note: An before model of this write-up misspelled the identify of the legal professional representing Stavros Panagoulopoulos. He is Barry Ranshi.

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