LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A video from a Jefferson County courtroom is getting a lot of attention on social media. And now, the Louisville Metro Department of Corrections is responding to allegations that they sent a woman to court without any pants on.
On Friday, Shavonne Salazar appeared in front of Judge Amber Wolf on a shoplifting charge. The public defender told the judge her client was denied pants and feminine hygiene products while at LMDC.
Judge Wolf immediately stopped the proceeding and called officials at LMDC to address the situation. Wolf is heard on the video saying the situation was "outrageous" and "inhumane."
After video from the courtroom was shared on social media, LMDC told WAVE 3 News Salazar was wearing yellow athletic shorts and her shirt was covering them. LMDC provided surveillance photos of Salazar being booked and being released.
On Sunday, LMDC posted the following statement on their Facebook page:
"Recently a local media outlet released a story referencing a female inmate in court and the judge concerned she was standing in front of her wearing "no pants". Here are the facts:
The woman in court had yellow athletic shorts on under her t-shirt. She did not have jumpsuit pants on, she had the clothes she was wearing when she was arrested. Happens every day. ..tank tops, t-shirts, running short, short dresses, sandals and flip flops....it's a hot Kentucky summer. People are arrested in what they are wearing when the leave the house to go to the grocery or Walmart, to a friends house or anywhere else.
The woman in court had been arrested wearing what she left her residence wearing - t-shirt and athletic shorts. The booking and release still video pictures of her being booked in and when she left the jail show her wearing her yellow shorts.
-The inmate was arrested in Fayette County on a Jefferson County warrant on July 24th (wearing normal clothing one might wear on a hot summer day).
-Fayette County released her to Jefferson County Sheriff's transport on July 27th...releasing her to JCSO transport in the same clothing she was wearing when arrested. She was processed at LMDC in the evening hours same date and after booking moved to preclass fresh arrest housing just as we do with all inmates 32000+ times per year. The inmate was assessed by Metro medical and mental health, had NO detox, medical, mental health (MH) or special housing needs.
-inmate goes to next day arraignment court in the jail court room the following morning, July 28th.
-Arraignment Court Judge holds her over until next day, inmate remains in 72 hr preclass fresh arrest housing for July 29th hold over court appearance.
-Inmate goes to court morning of July 29th from LMDC 72 hour fresh arrest housing on the warrant .
(Note....inmates in pre class/pre arraignment are normally housed in fresh arrest housing unless there is a medical, detox or MH necessity. If they remain in custody after 72 hours, and post arraignment, they are classified and moved to permanent housing.
While on this fresh arrest status, they normally remain in street clothes as they attempt bail/bond release, pretrial release or next day release from arraignment court).
-Corrections hands inmate off to custody of Sheriff bailiff for July 29th court appearance held over from day before. The Sheriff bailiff who accepts custody conveys nothing to Corrections about inappropriate dress (why....because there is nothing inappropriate about it....same clothes Fayette County released her wearing...what she was arrested wearing on a hot summer day...athletic shorts and T shirt and what any inmate might wear in to court while on this status....hot summer day clothing).
-The Judge hearing case on July 29th apparently on comment from public defender is under impression that inmate under Bailiffs custody in her court is not wearing any pants as t-shirt is pulled down below shorts.
-Judge is concerned (furious) inmate in court not "wearing pants" ( when actually wearing shorts she was arrested wearing on a hot summer day).
-judge calls Jail, COS Clark appears in Judges Court to address "furious" Judge who apparently feels clothing is inappropriate and inmate "is standing in front of her with no pants on".
-COS Clark, reacting to Judges comments that inmate is standing in front of her with "no pants on" arranges for inmate to get jail uniform per Judges request to "get her covered up".
-COS Clark conveys to furious Judge based upon her comment of "..... no pants on" and not knowing what exactly he is walking into, conveys to judge inmate should have been in jumpsuit, that he needed to look into it further, and would take necessary steps to fix it..
-judge releases inmate July 29th, inmate processed out of jail wearing the same clothes she was wearing when arrested and detained in Fayette County on a hot summer day on July 24th. ....just as we normally do.....32000 + releases per year.
As a final note - female sanitary napkins were in large supply in the fresh arrest dorm.
Perceptions do matter but facts matter more. What is portrayed is not who we are, nor does it reflect on the 98% of us who care about our workplace and our mission. While we expect more false or misleading information to follow by those not well-intended, do not let the actions of a few deter who we are as a whole and the outstanding work we do."