Last Wednesday, August 4, a judge in Ohio, United States, ordered that a man get the COVID (CCP virus) vaccine as a condition of probation, as reported by news station WCPO.
Brandon Rutherford, a 21-year-old man, was shocked by the decision of Hamilton County Magistrate Court Judge Christopher Wagner.
Rutherford recounted that the judge asked him questions as he stood before him, awaiting sentencing for his drug conviction.
The judge asked Rutherford if he had been vaccinated, and he said no. He also inquired if Rutherford intended to get the vaccine, and again, he told him ‘no.’
At the convicted man’s response, the judge told him he must take the CCP virus vaccine within the next two months as a condition of community control or probation.
Rutherford says he doesn’t plan to get the vaccine, doesn’t want to get it, and considers it crazy for the judge to tell him he must do so in order not to violate his probation.
“I’m just trying to do what I can to get off this as quickly as possible, like finding a job and everything else, but that little thing can set me back.” he said.
Carl Lewis is the young man’s attorney and said he doesn’t believe judges “are within their powers to do that.'”
He also expressed that this is the first time he’s heard of a Hamilton County judge ordering someone to be vaccinated against the CCP virus.
Lewis threatened legal action. “If he truly believes that he’s within authority to order the individual to get a vaccine, then we’ll have a legal issue to address,” the attorney said.
As reported by WCPO, in court documents in the case, there is a question mark next to the requirement that Rutherford is vaccinated.
The defendant disagrees that he should be sent to jail for not wanting to be vaccinated.
To all this, in a statement emailed to WCPO last Friday, Aug. 6, the judge alleges:
“The court’s responsibility when issuing a community control sanction is to rehabilitate the defendant and protect the community,” to which he adds, “Judges make decisions regularly regarding a defendant’s physical and mental health, such as ordering drug, alcohol, and mental health treatment.”
According to a copy of the hearing transcript provided by the judge’s office, the judge told Rutherford:
“I’m just a judge, not a doctor, but I think the vaccine’s a lot safer than fentanyl, which is what you had in your pocket,” adding, “You’re going to maintain employment. You’re not going to be around a firearm. I’m going to order you, within the next two months, to get a vaccine and show that to the probation office. Okay?”
Judge Wagner threatened the defendant to send him to state prison for up to a year and a half if he violated Community Control conditions by not having the jab.
While both the defendant and his attorney did not object to the judge’s order during the hearing, Lewis plans a hearing on the matter.
In turn, the judge said in his statement, “We might have to hold a hearing if the defendant has good reason not to take the vaccine.”