MD judge orders torture of defendant

The normalization of electric-shock torture continues. It's so convenient, it rarely leaves marks, and its technological nature makes it feel so much more civilized than whips.

Maryland Judge Robert Nalley ordered officer to shock defendant in court

On Nalley’s order, the Charles County Sheriff’s Department officer pushed a button that administered an electric shock to Delvon L. King, 25, of Waldorf. King, who is not a lawyer, represented himself against gun charges.

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In the moments before Nalley ordered King to be shocked, the defendant did not threaten Nalley or anyone else, according to the court transcript. King did not make any threatening physical moves toward Nalley or anyone else, and did not attempt to flee, according to the defendant and his parents, Alexander and Doris King who were in the courtroom and witnessed the attack.

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Making a pro se defendant continue with jury selection and his trial the same day a court officer shocked him at the direction of a judge could affect the defendant’s right to a fair trial, said Rocah, of the ACLU.

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Even if the defendant had recovered physically, he might be affected psychologically, Rocah said. For instance, such a defendant might feel intimidated by the judge, the civil rights lawyer said.

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