Ethics Complaint Against Ex-PD Includes Allegation She Used the S-Word in Court
Posted May 8, 2012 5:30 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss
An ethics complaint against a former assistant public defender in Cook County includes allegations that she yelled and said the S-word in court.
Therese Cesar Garza is accused of failing to communicate plea offers and disclosing confidential information about her clients to the judge, the Legal Profession Blog reports. In one case, she is accused of telling the judge, before a plea was entered, that the client stole baby formula to feed his 8-month-old child.
The ethics complaint also targets courtroom conduct deemed to be disruptive, including alleged use of the S-word. According to the complaint, Cesar said “Oh s---" after learning a warrant had been issued for her client’s arrest. Cesar said it was her fault because she failed to talk to her client, according to a transcript cited in the complaint. Then she went on to deny the four-letter word.
“Oh shoot, I said. Oh shoot,” Cesar said. When Judge Anthony Calabrese said he heard a different word, Cesar replied, “Whatever. I know the word you think I said. My mother never let me say that, and I'll tell you why. But I said shoot, darn it.”
In another incident Cesar is accused of yelling in Calabrese’s courtroom. According to the transcript, Calabrese stated: “Let me just indicate again, you are yelling on the record. This happens all the time when you don't get your way. Because you lose something doesn't mean you have to start yelling at me. I haven't gotten deaf over the course of the time I have listened to your argument.”