Broward County Circuit Court Judge Merrilee Ehrlich berated wheelchair bound-defendant Sandra Twiggs, who needed breathing medication, in court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on April 14.
Twiggs, who had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma, died on April 18, and Ehrlich was removed from the bench, notes WPLG.
In a courtroom video, Ehrlich is heard telling Twiggs: “Excuse me, don’t say anything beyond what I am asking you.”
Twiggs started coughing in the court and told Ehrlich that she needed her “breathing treatment.”
Ehrlich fired back: “I am not here to talk about your breathing treatment… I am not going to spend all day with her interrupting me.”
Broward Chief Administrative Judge Jack Tuter said on April 21 that Ehrlich would not be in court again, notes The Sun-Sentinel:
In light of recent events we have decided Judge Ehrlich will be told not to return to the courthouse as her retirement is effective June 30. I will be working this weekend to find a substitute to cover Judge Ehrlich’s [family court] division.
Ehrlich, who bravely attacked Twiggs in court, has not yet summoned enough courage to speak to the media.