Coronavirus

Texas Will No Longer Send People to Jail for Violating Strict Social Distancing

Gov. Greg Abbott made the change after a Dallas salon owner was jailed for reopening her salon.

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A Dallas woman who received jail time for reopening her salon in defiance of state and local stay-at-home orders will be released, following Gov. Greg Abbott's decision to soften the punishments for violating his COVID-19 restrictions.

Incarceration is no longer on the table for Texans who do not abide by social distancing rules.

"Throwing Texans in jail who have had their businesses shut down through no fault of their own is nonsensical, and I will not allow it to happen," Abbott, a Republican, said in a press release Thursday. "That is why I am modifying my executive orders to ensure confinement is not a punishment for violating an order."

After closing her doors on March 22, Shelley Luther, owner of Salon à la Mode, resumed business on April 24, publicly tearing up a cease and desist letter. She told District Judge Eric Moyé on Tuesday afternoon that she did so out of desperation because she was not able to feed her children.

"Your actions were selfish, putting your own interests ahead of the community in which you live," said Moyé, who told Luther she could pay a fine in lieu of incarceration if she issued an apology and agreed to shutter her salon. "A society cannot function where one's own beliefs in a concept of liberty permits you to flaunt your disdain for the rulings of duly elected officials," he added.

"Judge, I would like to say that I have much respect for this court and laws, and that I've never been in this position before, and it's not someplace that I want to be," said a masked Luther, speaking into a telephone. "But I have to disagree with you, sir, when you say that I'm selfish. Because feeding my kids is not selfish."

Moyé sentenced her to a seven-day jail term and ordered that she pay at least $3,500 in fines. The move prompted immediate backlash, and Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick paid her outlandish fees.

"I find it outrageous and out of touch that during this national pandemic, a judge, in a county that actually released hardened criminals for fear of contracting COVID-19, would jail a mother for operating her hair salon in an attempt to put food on her family's table," wrote Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton in a statement.

Ana Isabel Castro-Garcia and Brenda Stephanie Mata, who were arrested in Laredo, Texas, for providing cosmetology services from their homes, will also be absolved of any further jail time. Both women were facing 180 days in jail and $1,000 fines after undercover cops posing as customers busted them last week.

Texas salons will be allowed to reopen on Friday.

NEXT: Andrew Cuomo's Morally Grotesque Rationale for Maintaining COVID-19 Lockdowns

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  1. The judge should be immediately arrested. Nothing like teaching that boy a lesson he so richly deserves.

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  2. Is it legal to sell rope in TX?

    1. It should be for purposes of hanging uppity judges.

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  3. How is different than drinking and driving, texting while driving, or any other thing that is socially responsible?
    She elected to put strangers in danger so she could make a buck.

    1. The negro judge put strangers in danger.

    2. Nobody was forcing strangers into her salon. Build a better stupid argument.

      1. Imagine, if you will, that Joe Biden is elected.

        Imagine, if your will, that one of these customers comes to national attention and is invited to stand with Joe Biden at the inauguration.

        Suddenly his vice-Presidential pick matters a whole lot more.

        1. You have shit in your teeth.

    3. No one came into her salon who didn’t choose to and take whatever risks that entailed, which are few. Why don’t goose step back to wherever it is you came from.

    4. “How is different than drinking and driving, texting while driving, or any other thing that is socially responsible?..”

      How is this different from abysmal ignorance?

    5. “She elected to put strangers in danger so she could make a buck.”

      We cant all have a cushy job being an election season leftist troll

      1. I don’t know… the hiring standards seem pretty lax. I’m sure you could have that job if you applied yourself. Surely you could do a better job than putin there.

    6. How is different than drinking and driving, texting while driving, or any other thing that is socially responsible?
      She elected to put strangers in danger so she could make a buck.

      1) Her customers voluntarily and deliberately entered her shop. Drivers that are harmed by drunk or distracted drivers didn’t voluntarily and deliberately get on the road with a drunk or distracted driver.

      2) Go back to whatever hole you crawled out of you fascist shit swizzler.

    7. It takes one hell of a sociopath to believe that ensuring that children don’t starve is a selfish act.

    8. Drinking and driving shouldn’t be illegal unless there is a clear and present danger vs. a hypothetical one.

      Stricter restrictions on drink driving haven’t appreciably reduced deaths as much as advances in car safety and changing trends in liquor consumption. But boy has it been a goldmine for the regulatory state.

      Social responsibility is the same cudgel use to justify the war on drugs. And much like drunk driving, rates of addiction remain largely static despite the put others at harm pleas.

      You could have at least said think of the children.

    9. Well lets see, those are LAWS passed by he legislature. She was not violating any law.

  4. The gofundme just passed $500,000.

    1. That’s a lot of manure for you to eat.

  5. Texas Will No Longer Send People to Jail for Violating Strict Social Distancing

    Wait, wait, don’t tell me….. They’ll be summarily executed?

    1. Even worse, they’ll be relocated to Oklahoma.

  6. Sarah Palin visited Luther’s salon on Wednesday, posing for pictures with the salon’s employees.

    That is nice. I wonder if Mr. Buttplug was in attendance.

    1. I think you’d have to look from a certain angle to know.

      1. *Archer’s voice*

        Wait, I had something for this… something about “get me some good low-angle stuff … I want to see fur – and early morning dew.”

    2. Sarah Palin still exists?

  7. >>”A society cannot function where one’s own beliefs in a concept of liberty permits you to flaunt your disdain for the rulings of duly elected officials,”

    aw man that’s pretty much all I do.

  8. I’ve heard that the stay at home/shelter in place orders have no legal criminal penalty attached to them and thus this judge was just making a political criminal penalty. Seems she was really a political prisoner and not a prisoner for a criminal act. if this is true could the woman even though now released sue for all the heartach and time in jail.

    Maybe a few lawyers can enlighten me on this subject

  9. Everyone is getting this wrong.

    She was not jailed for the action of opening her salon; she was jailed for insufficiently groveling to the judge about it.

    1. Like most crimes outside of murder, rape, theft or destruction of property her crime was heresy against the progressive cathedral.

  10. “…”Your actions were selfish, putting your own interests ahead of the community in which you live,” said Moyé,..”

    And according to JFree, she was ‘an aggressor’!
    Stupidity is not limited to those in robes.

    1. Stupidity is not limited to those in robes.

      And there seems to be a lot of it going around these days.

  11. Good on her for not cowing to intimidation.

    1. Bureaucrats that have no business being in any position of authority wanted to make an example out of her…..and in a way, they did.

  12. The Dallas Morning News wrote an article ‘Who Is Eric Moye?’ and proceeded to find a bunch of his pals to swear what a great and principled guy he is. Swell guy. The swellest.

    They completely missed the point. And tried to distract from the big picture of his egregious ruling. He told a woman she was selfish and he basically told her she was going to eat when he told her to. That’s where the prick lost the plot. He want her to lick his statist dick and she refused. She’s the hero. Not this proud Democrat douche.

    He was pounding her into submission like they did Winston.

    His language was disturbing.

    The law is an ass and he’s an ass. Beccaria warned that if people perceive that justice is unjust they lose confidence in it.

    Guys like Moye erode the public trust.

    https://www.dallasnews.com/news/courts/2020/05/06/who-is-eric-moye-the-dallas-judge-who-jailed-salon-owner-shelley-luther/

    1. The absolute best you could say of his actions would be to call them ‘arbitrary’; the worst is just plain ‘evil’.

    2. I wonder if Judge Moye would tell Harriet Tubman that “society cannot function when one’s own belief in a concept of liberty permits you to flaunt your disdain for the rulings of duly elected officials.” Or does that principle only apply when HE agrees with those elected officials?

  13. I’ve heard it said during past crises that the Constitution is not a suicide pact. I’ve heard it during this crisis.

    But here’s the thing. It’s the Constitution that authorizes all lesser laws to exist. Including the ones that give a Governor the power to issue emergency orders.

    If the highest of our laws is not a suicide pact, no lesser law can be either.

  14. So forgive me if I’m wrong, but she was technically jailed for contempt of the court order, right? So while the order itself can no longer be used to jail someone, a judge could still issue an injunction over it and jail someone for contempt, right? Or does the re-issuance forbid such injunctions? Is that possible? My understanding is that judges can basically write injunctions for anything, and you’d have to appeal it.

    I mean, that was the issue here. The judge was clearly butthurt that she wasn’t kowtowing to his orders. That’s why he did the moralistic lecture and the “apologize or else” shtick. I just think that unless there are consequences for judges like this, the issue isn’t really solved. Sure, none will probably make this exact mistake again to avoid the attention, but they’ll continue to do it on other things.

  15. Well, if he didn’t put into jail those who are violating social distancing, people will did it again and again because there is no punishment on it. I don’t think it is the best decision. All we have to do now, is just stay at home and keep safe. Well, let me introduce you our website https://poolservicegranadahills.com/. We’re Pool Service Granada Hills, your #1 pool company! For more than 10 years, our company possesses the unique ability to service more home and business owners in Los Angeles and the surrounding areas than any other! Click it now!

    1. Well than have the legislature pass an actual law. You know like the constitution mandates.

  16. “Throwing Texans in jail who have had their businesses shut down through no fault of their own is nonsensical, and I will not allow it to happen,” Abbott, a Republican, said in a press release Thursday.

    Gosh, Mr. Governor, maybe you should have made that clear in your original order.

  17. Abbott is the original douche, he enacted these executive orders. What did he imagine was going to happen?

    I am amazed that he and Cuomo are managing to spin themselves as heroes in their states.

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  19. Conform obey stay home conform wear a mask conform do not see your loved ones conform do not be there when they die conform no funeral conform obey do not touch your face conform wear a mask conform obey get vaccinated conform shame those that do not obey conform listen to your media conform your political party is better conform trust the leaders you did not trust 6 months ago conform government knows best conform obey social distance conform do not travel conform wear your mask conform millions will die conform trust Dr Faucci conform obey get your vaccine conform stay home conform it is a pandemic conform do not question conform stand in line conform obey there is no conspiracy conform the rich and powerful do not make plans conform obey stay home conform get vaccinated conform wear your mask conform obey shame anyone that doesn’t

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