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Liar Liar Pants On Fire

Liar Liar Pants On Fire

This story has the fortunate coincidence of simultaneously being both a lawyer joke and a Florida Man joke, except it’s apparently true:

A Miami defense lawyer’s pants burst into flames Wednesday afternoon as he began his closing arguments in front of a jury — in an arson case.

Stephen Gutierrez, who was arguing that his client’s car spontaneously combusted and was not intentionally set on fire, had been fiddling in his pocket as he was about to address jurors when smoke began billowing out his right pocket, witnesses told the Miami Herald.

He rushed out of the Miami courtroom, leaving spectators stunned. After jurors were ushered out, Gutierrez returned unharmed, with a singed pocket, and insisted it wasn’t a staged defense demonstration gone wrong, observers said.

Instead, Gutierrez blamed a faulty battery in an e-cigarette, witnesses told the Miami Herald.

“It was surreal,” one observer told the Miami Herald.

Repeated calls to Gutierrez’s cellphone went unanswered. Miami-Dade police and prosecutors are now investigating the episode. Officers seized several frayed e-cigarette batteries as evidence.

(…)

Gutierrez was representing Claudy Charles, 48, who is accused of intentionally setting his car on fire in South Miami-Dade. He had just started his closing arguments when the fire broke out. Jurors convicted Charles anyway of second-degree arson.

“Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, my client did not intentionally set that fire. The car erupted in flames all on its own. Just like my pants.”

H/T: Dave Schuler

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Franklin says:

    Wow, everything comes together on this story … well played, Doug.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  2. JohnMcC says:

    I think it is our proximity to the Bermuda triangle. Those ancient aliens have assessed the human race and condemned us to living down to our true selves.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  3. al-Alameda says:

    Thank god for Florida

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  4. An Interested Party says:

    If that phrase really were true, Trump would need to wear some extra strength asbestos underwear every single day and have a few extra pairs ready to go, particularly when he was on Twitter…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  5. gVOR08 says:

    I’m retired and moving to Florida in a few months. Why do I keep having second thoughts? This is a good Florida Man story, but the classic is still Florida Man Shot in Ass Protecting Turtle Nests From Drunk Guy.

    I figured if I showed a handgun that would be enough to diffuse any situation

    said the victim.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  6. Anonne says:

    I still can’t get over the jerk who threw a 3′ alligator through a Wendy’s drive thru window.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Liberal Capitalist says:

    @JohnMcC:

    I think it is our proximity to the Bermuda triangle. Those ancient aliens have assessed the human race and condemned us to living down to our true selves.

    Well, that explains why Trump needs to go down every weekend. Like Seven of Nine, he needs to recharge.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0