Judge accused of waving revolver at defence lawyers and mocking security staff
The judge is alleged to have said: ‘My guns are bigger than your security’s guns!’
21st July 2022
A judge in the USA has been accused of waving a gun at defence lawyers.
The West Virginian judge has also been accused of mocking the security staff in a courthouse because their guns were smaller than his.
In an affidavit, attorney Lauren Varnado claimed Circuit Court Judge David Hummel Jr. made fun of her legal associates for trying to bring security staff into the courtroom in Wetzel County Courthouse in New Martinsville on March 12.
She had been representing a company called EQT Production Company and Equitable Resources who were being sued by landowners over a fossil fuel royalty payments issue.
Security officers were blocked from entering the courtroom in March, but Judge Hummel has been accused of mocking Varnado for hiring them, allegedly saying: “Aren’t me and my guns and security enough?”
He then allegedly added: “My guns are bigger than your security’s guns!”
Judge Hummel denied any such incident occurred in the courtroom.
He told the Daily Beast: “There is no incident. I absolutely, categorically deny I had a gun that day in the courtroom.”
However, Ms Varnado told NBC news: “I could not believe it was happening.
“As a trial lawyer, the courtroom, during a trial, it is my office. It is my workplace.
“When you experience violence in your workplace, it’s a special kind of trauma.”
She also claimed the judge “rotated the gun” in the courtroom until it was pointing at her, describing the incident as “psychotic”.
Judge Hummel did reportedly admit that he had a gun in the courtroom, allegedly saying: “It was secreted in a drawer on the bench.
“I never showed my Colt 1911 at the trial whatsoever at any point during that trial.”