One Tennessee judge has been hailed for her no-nonsense, brutal take down of a gang member who arrogantly dared claim a once-pleasant suburb as ‘his hood’ while in her courtroom.
After O’Shae Smith told Judge Lila Statom that he shot a rival gang member for being ‘in his hood’, she had no problem telling him the area didn’t actually belong to him.
‘Sir, East Lake Courts is not your hood’, Statom began, referencing the public housing project where the shooting took place.
‘It’s the citizens of the United States who own that because they work and pay taxes, you don’t own that.’
Statom said she wanted to show Smith he wasn’t ‘in control everywhere’.
‘It makes me upset because there are people that live in East Lake Court who get up and go to work every day. They take their children to daycare,’ she told WRCB-TV.
Statom had a personal connection to the area that has been ravaged with gang violence, and told Smith ‘it used to be a very nice place to live’.
‘My grandmother lived there and I spent many a night,’ she told the courtroom. ‘It was a nice place where you could walk around. People like you have made it a violent, unsafe place to live.’
‘Hopefully we can make it the place that it used to be back when it was originally built for people who didn’t have anywhere else to live – to make it a safe place to live,’ she said.
According to police, Smith, 20, shot Kendre Allen, 18, in the hip in late March. Allen also appeared in Statom’s court last week to testify against Smith.
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