When criminal defendants appear in my court by themselves, I ask, “Do you have an attorney?” Most defendants request a continuance, so they can hire a lawyer, or they ask me to appoint the public defender to represent them.
Occasionally, I get a defendant who stands erect and proudly proclaims, “God is my lawyer!” or “Jesus is my lawyer!”
These defendants seem to think I will be shocked or intimidated. They also seem to think that the audience will be impressed. They think they are being clever and cute.
I quickly shatter their delusions with one or more of the following responses:
- “Has your lawyer checked in with the clerk yet?”
- “When do think your lawyer is going to appear today?”
- “Where is your lawyer?”
- “Can you give my clerk your lawyer’s phone number so we can give him a call?”
- “Maybe your lawyer has an associate who can appear for him.”
- “Do you have a copy of your lawyer’s retainer agreement?”
- “Why don’t you step into the hallway and call your lawyer to see when he is available?”
- “Do you have your lawyer’s business card and Bar number”
I am still waiting for God or Jesus to make an appearance in my court.
Of course, Jesus may end up representing some of these criminals defendants as their “Advocate” at the final judgement. But that is for the future, and in a much higher court.
I doubt that Jesus or God will ever visit my humble courtroom. If either of them appears in my court, I will let you know.
However, the Devil’s disciples do appear in my criminal court on a regular basis.