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Texas AG Calls for Release of Salon Owner Jailed for Opening Her Business to Feed Her Kids

Texas AG Calls for Release of Salon Owner Jailed for Opening Her Business to Feed Her Kids

As if the sentence wasn’t bad enough, the judge publicly shamed Luther, telling her she was acting selfishly by opening her business. He agreed to let Luther off the hook if she apologized for being selfish. Luther refused.

Wednesday, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sent a letter to the Dallas County judge who sentenced salon owner Shelly Luther to seven days in jail after she refused to apologize for opening her business against lockdown orders.

Dallas County was one of the counties that released “hardened criminals” arguing it was to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. But yes, let’s jail a woman opening her business to feed her family and ensure her stylists can feed theirs.

In a letter, Paxton wrote:

“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,” said Attorney General Paxton. “The trial judge did not need to lock up Shelley Luther. His order is a shameful abuse of judicial discretion, which seems like another political stunt in Dallas. He should release Ms. Luther immediately.”

Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick called the sentence “outrageous” and volunteered to pay the $7k fine and to “be placed under House Arrest” in her stead.

In response, 12 Dallas County judges said the contents of Paxton’s letter were “inappropriate”:

The letter:

Luther’s attorney has appealed to the Texas Supreme Court:

As if the sentence wasn’t bad enough, the judge publicly shamed Luther, telling her she was acting selfishly by opening her business. He agreed to let Luther off the hook if she apologized for being selfish. Luther refused. And good for her for doing so.

For more on the original story, this is a decent synopsis of Luther’s troubles:

A GoFundMe was created to help support Luther. At the time this published, the GoFundMe had raised over $420,000.

According to a German scientists, there’s no proof the coronavirus has been spread through grocery markets, hair salons, or restaurants:

Can you get infected with coronavirus after using a shopping trolley in the supermarket? What about by touching a door handle in the office, or a remote control?

These are questions that many people have been asking since the coronavirus outbreak began.

Researchers have so far come to different conclusions on how long the virus can survive on surfaces. But now a team of scientists in Germany are trying to find answers.

“So far, no transmission of the virus in supermarkets, restaurants or hairdressers has been proven,” explained Bonn virologist Hendrik Streeck on the ZDF Markus Lanz talk show.

Instead, the major outbreaks have been the result of close get-togethers over a longer period of time, he said.

As Phase 2 of the grand re-opening begins Friday, haircutting will once again be decriminalized.


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She is an American hero and Patriot. I hope to see the day the judge is removed from the bench disbarred and has to apologize to her.

Mother’s Day? That’s complete bullsh*^! FREE SHELLEY!

Judge needs arresting bad! Let him spend time in Segregation as a ‘suicide’ risk, while investigating a serious ‘tip’ about his criminality. Pull in for ‘questioning’ everyone signing the above letter. Why the hell not?

It needs to be noted that this judge is an Obama judge… shocking, isn’t it?

These despots need to be hammered down.

The left will not be satisfied till this country is utterly destroyed.

    amatuerwrangler in reply to oldgoat36. | May 6, 2020 at 10:46 pm

    Wait a minute! You are telling us that Obama made appointments to Texas state courts? I doubt that. Especially when we see that the habeas petition went to the TEXAS supreme court. You may be letting you emotions get the best of your good sense.

    Calm down.

      George_Kaplan in reply to amatuerwrangler. | May 6, 2020 at 11:43 pm

      oldgoat36 is mistaken I believe. It looks like Jenkins and his 12 comrades are all Democrats elected to judgeship in Dallas, not appointed by Obama. I don’t know if that makes it better or worse.

        Tom Servo in reply to George_Kaplan. | May 7, 2020 at 12:57 am

        Judge Moye was originally appointed to that seat by Ann Richards, and he’s been re-elected easily ever since. I should point out that he’s black, and his constituency is only 33% anglo. I think there’s a whole lot of “Get Whitey!!!” in his rulings. Certainly he doesn’t need a single Anglo vote to keep his office, and he knows it.

          The Friendly Grizzly in reply to Tom Servo. | May 7, 2020 at 7:37 am

          I’m not “Anglo”. i am full-blooded Caucasian. This including all white people in the lable “Anglo “ is racist!!!1!!

          /sarc tag for those who need it.

        Joe-dallas in reply to George_Kaplan. | May 7, 2020 at 1:57 pm

        I live in Dallas county and approximately 12-15 years ago the county switched from having solid republican judges to mostly crappy democrat judges. Most of the Dem Judges win with 60-65% of the vote in the general election. I started voting in the democrat primary several years ago solely to vote against the really bad judges since a republican can no longer win a county wide election.

    notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to oldgoat36. | May 7, 2020 at 1:00 am

    Get a load of the judge positioning himself with Oboma.

    “..that you see the error of your ways and understand that society cannot function..permits you to flaunt your disdain for the rulings of duly elected officials..that you owe an apology to the officials that you disrespected by flagrantly ignoring — and in one case defiling [sic] — their orders that you now know obviously applies to you..”


    “If someone [who barely has a grasp on the tenets of the English language] were to utter such imperious drivel to me under the color of questionable authority, my response would be terse and unequivocal..”

rabid wombat | May 6, 2020 at 9:33 pm

The advertisements write themselves….

This judge treated a business owner like the Chinese communist government treated its researchers.

It’s racism. Black judge gets a chance to stick it to a white woman.

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | May 6, 2020 at 10:30 pm

Hey evil and stupid judge,
you hairdresser knows ALL…………..

Firstly, kudos to Paxton and Patrick. They share the outrage of the citizens.

Secondly, these arrogant judges can bring their high noses down from altitude and stop acting like they have to be in control. They are not infallible – obviously.

Thirdly, I suspect Ms. Luther and her staff won’t have to worry about lack of clients in for the foreseeable future.

The governor can pardon her immediately. Why not? Free her now. Gain political points later.

    Milhouse in reply to faboutlaws. | May 6, 2020 at 11:49 pm

    No, actually, he can’t pardon her. Texas governors’ pardon powers are very limited. It’s the Board of Pardons and Paroles that has the power, and they have strict procedures.

    Close The Fed in reply to faboutlaws. | May 7, 2020 at 12:48 pm

    Well Abbott finally removed criminal penalties from the order, retro to April 2nd I believe.

    Unsure how it affects the posture of the case.

I hope all the deplorables whose livelihoods are deemed non-essential will remember this contemptuous treatment when we’re asked to vote in November.

The Friendly Grizzly | May 6, 2020 at 10:57 pm

Let’s see. We have a beauty shop on her being jailed for trying to make a living. In Texas.

In another part of the state the sheriff walks in with a SWAT team, and arrives in armored vehicles. Ulta close up the tavern. Eight people are arrested. In Texas.

What happened to all of the Texas macho? All of that don’t mess with Texas? Don’t mess with Texas was an anti-littering campaign, I realize that. But still this is Texas

And, where is the wonderful governor Abbet and all of this? And, I doubt either of these 2 Things Took Pl. as a result of the Californians Texas blame bad things for.

Her gofundme is $473,000+ now

That horrible Dallas Co. judge IS UP FOR REELECTION

Hope Texans VOTE THE BASTID out

    Tom Servo in reply to LisaGinNZ. | May 7, 2020 at 1:11 am

    As I posted upthread, Judge Moye is black, and his constituency is only 33% anglo. “Get Whitey!!” is always a winning campaign slogan in his district.

caseoftheblues | May 6, 2020 at 11:35 pm

The fascists are enjoying the power they have always dreamed of and they will not let it go without a fight

Close The Fed | May 6, 2020 at 11:41 pm

Have to agree with Grizzly. Texans, what’s the problem?

Abbott, what are you doing??? There’s no excuse for this.

Never in the history of our country – NEVER – have we restricted healthy people to their homes and away from work. Unheard of. UNHEARD OF.

Politicians, get off the mount. Nobody died to make you gods. We need the damn wood.

I notice the judge didn’t seem to have his mask nose piece properly crimped to actually filter the air.

Law-itis. Totalitarianism. Same thing.

Wish they’d open the parks to overnights, so I could take a road trip.

    Milhouse in reply to Close The Fed. | May 6, 2020 at 11:52 pm

    What can Abbott do about it. He’s only a governor. And he’s a governor in a state where that is not a very powerful position. The Lt Gov actually has more power than the governor.

      Tom Servo in reply to Milhouse. | May 7, 2020 at 1:13 am

      You are correct, of course. Abbott has no power here, the only hope for relief can come from the Texas Supreme Court, and I see that it has now been appealed directly to them.

      Close The Fed in reply to Milhouse. | May 7, 2020 at 8:51 am

      My understand is that it’s Abbott’s order.

      He should rescind it and open the state up, period.

      Let the old and infirm stay home on their own. I’m sure no one has missed coverage of this virus.

      Julian A Smith in reply to Milhouse. | May 7, 2020 at 6:07 pm

      Would you please explain why you think that the Lieutenant Governor wields more power than the Governor?

    The Friendly Grizzly in reply to Close The Fed. | May 7, 2020 at 7:46 am

    Never in the history of our country – NEVER – have we restricted healthy people to their homes and away from work. Unheard of. UNHEARD OF.

    If I am permitted some levity in this very serious subject, your statement brings to mind something Senator Joseph McCarthy said, “That’s the most unheard of thing I ever heard of!”

Close The Fed | May 6, 2020 at 11:43 pm

Oh, and folks — it’s all well and good to say “vote ’em out.” But we need candidates.

If you are able to run, you should. We have so many craptastic officials, you have many choices about who to run against.

I am an Abbott supporter. But in this, i must admit that this moronic judge was applying the governor’s executive order. If the governor didn’t want the order enforced, he shouldn’t have issued it. The governor’s order included fines and jail. Luther is a heroine, Moyes is a moron, but the governor set it up. He should fix it and lift the executive order completely. Restore our freeedom and trust the citizenry.

    The Packetman in reply to lawdoc. | May 7, 2020 at 7:48 am

    Gov Abbott’s order is expired; Luther is violating the extension put in place by Dallas Co.

    In either case, Luther is in the right …

    Joe-dallas in reply to Pasadena Phil. | May 7, 2020 at 2:06 pm

    Most of Texas is behaving properly by non enforcement – except in the dallas, houston, austin and ft worth.

    The salon is in Dallas county, and within the Dallas city limits.

    Fwiw, I live approx 1 mile from that salon and neighborhood reports said that it was darn near a swat team that eventually closed the salon.

    I would get a haircut there, but my neighbors are projecting a 3-4 hour wait times.

So. . . will the governor or AG release her? Will the local Sheriff, will the judge?

It is all bluster. They will let her sit in jail. They will do nothing against the tyrannical state they are all a part of. Nice words but. . . nothing else. These are not “brave” people for locking her up or “talking”. The government now knows they are in charge of the people and not the reverse. You have no voice. Stay home, lock you r doors, stay safe. It is dangerous out there. You might catch something bad.

Make a decision folks; go out, walk in the streets, go to stores, drive around. Hiding does not make you brave, it does not free your brothers and sisters, it does not prevent being exposed. It is simply you obeying your masters.

    Milhouse in reply to OldSarg. | May 7, 2020 at 8:29 am

    Neither the governor, the AG, nor the sheriff can release her. And the judge doesn’t give a *****

Wow! Look at the letters from some Texas Judges and the actions of some Texas sheriffs, to the point of bringing war machines to a protest. Can you imagine that Texas Judges would argue that we were elected and can do what we want? Sounds very much like a dictatorship. Let us hope that the voters in Texas fix this.

    Milhouse in reply to kjon. | May 7, 2020 at 8:30 am

    They’re standing up for the principle of judicial independence from the executive branch. The AG shouldn’t be putting pressure on a judge. The judge should have some common sense.

      Close The Fed in reply to Milhouse. | May 7, 2020 at 9:56 am

      Of COURSE NOT, he shouldn’t be writing letters to the judges.

      He should be at their doors with guns. THAT’S the proper response to the wholesale demolition of Americans’ rights.

      Judges seem to forget: we had a revolution over a lot less than this crap.

        Milhouse in reply to Close The Fed. | May 7, 2020 at 11:09 pm

        Look, judicial independence is an important principle. I’m sure you’ll agree with that. And if you’re a judge you have a duty to stand up for that principle, even when one of your colleagues is being a dick.

Just a small quibble here:
Articles like this constantly use the phrase “feed their family”. Yeah I know it’s not literal, but it’s also not accurate and it sort of bugs me.
Nobody who has a functioning family is starving in this country. They may be at risk of being evicted, but we are flooded with food and unless One # has drug or mental health issues he won’t go hungry. People ain’t dying of this disease because they’re too thin.
A place to live costs a whole lot more than your grocery bill, What people are at risk for is worse than being a little hungry, it’s losing their home. It would’ve been more accurate to say she opened her business to provide her kids with a home.

    kjon in reply to beagleEar. | May 7, 2020 at 7:57 am

    You are right, a small quibble.

    Close The Fed in reply to beagleEar. | May 7, 2020 at 8:10 am

    Luther stated she got no federal monies until very very recently. She further stated some of her hairdressers were going hungry in order to feed their children.

    If you think about it, this is actually probably true. The grocery stores do have food, but you have to have $$. They don’t give it away.

    These ladies probably weren’t able to apply for food stamps, because I bet the offices were closed. They probably don’t have savings, because a lot of people don’t. Our monetary system has disincentivized modest saving.

    So, they probably had no cash. No cash, no food stamps, no PPP money, unemployment system overwhelmed, very believable they had no money for food. I myself was worried about this. Not kidding.

    starride in reply to beagleEar. | May 7, 2020 at 10:55 am

    Sorry but the realities of life in circumstances like this make your little quibble complete and utter B.S.

    Most people in the lower 2 quintiles of economic prosperity are one minor disaster away from poverty and starvation. They just do not have the backing and savings to weather something like this. Add to the fact that almost all social services are slammed with applications and responses are being pushed out weeks. Causes people to be in dire situations. In fact there is a report today that the spike in the suicide rate in Australia caused by covid will exceed the deaths caused by covid by a factor of 10.

    Barry in reply to beagleEar. | May 7, 2020 at 10:43 pm

    “Just a small quibble here:”

    Since she’s two months behind paying her mortgage, it’s clear she is diverting funds to feeding her children.

    Your “quibble” is stupid. She needs to work to feed her family. My grocery stores all require payment every time I shop. I imagine grocery stores in Texas operate the same way.

So District Judge Eric Moyé kulaked Shelly Luther for wanting to feed her kids.

JaneQPublic | May 7, 2020 at 9:29 am

Show me the law that prohibits being selfish. The judge said he would not send her to jail if she apologized for being SELFISH. This is a true miscarriage of justice and an abuse of judicial power.

    Close The Fed in reply to JaneQPublic. | May 7, 2020 at 9:57 am

    Good catch.

    Milhouse in reply to JaneQPublic. | May 7, 2020 at 12:02 pm

    He didn’t say there was a law against it. He said he was taking it into account in his sentencing decision, which he is completely entitled to do.

      Close The Fed in reply to Milhouse. | May 7, 2020 at 12:51 pm

      By all means, let’s genuflect to a judge!!!

      That new-style State Religion!!!

      Tasty new tradition!

        Milhouse in reply to Close The Fed. | May 7, 2020 at 2:59 pm

        How is that in any way responsive? Who’s genuflecting to anyone? JaneQPublic made a stupid comment, based on the apparent premise that a judge, in deciding on a sentence, may only take into account which laws, if any, the defendant has broken. That has never been the case.


The ‘mandate’; emergency health order issued by the Gov regarding barbershop, nail salon does not expire until Friday May 8. On that day they can reopen within certain cleaning, occupancy conditions being met. This lady chose to open up prior to that date.

The local state district judge for some reason found her in contempt of court. Details on that are a bit fuzzy. So bottom line is that is something the Gov couldn’t pardon.

As many have posted, in TX it depends on where you are as to how goofy the local government is. Large metropolitan areas Harris, Dallas, EL Paso counties are still seeing some growth in hospitalization. Most other counties are seeing the leveling off and decrease that meet the gate conditions for further relaxing of the lockdown.

This lady, IMO, knew that she was going to get hemmed up. That is what makes her action all the more brave IMO. Saying something and doing something which has actual consequences are miles apart. Assuming the TX CT of Appeals and TX Supreme CT take this case up, we will get some clarity on the court’s view of a limiting principle on some of these ’emergency’ measures.

BREAKING: Dallas salon owner Shelley Luther ORDERED released by the Supreme Court of Texas.

    Joe-dallas in reply to dmacleo. | May 7, 2020 at 1:59 pm

    Bingo –

    The Texas Supreme court is pretty solid repulican and rational.

    Tarrant, Dallas Harris and Travis counties are pretty solid democrats.

    Republicans value freedom – Democrats value control.

texansamurai | May 7, 2020 at 12:44 pm

the ” judge ” in this case really blew it–fortunately, public record will survive to be reheard again and again come election time–black, white, latino, martian, whatever, the schoolkid conclusion is this fool of a judge could do the same to MY wife, mother, sister or me–he’s toast–period

It’s disappointing that so many judges would support what is clearly an abuse of discretion.

    Milhouse in reply to rochf. | May 7, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    They didn’t support anything. They simply stood up for the judiciary’s independence from the executive.

I am not familiar with Texas laws and rules, but in three jurisdictions that Iknow, the Code of Judicial Conduct applies only to judicial officers. How can 12 district court judges sign a letter accusing a non-judicial officer (the Attorney General) of violating the JUDICIAL Code? Are they f#$%ing stupid? Not one of them realized this issue?

Now, his conduct probably violated the Rules of Professional Conduct, but that is a different story. Idiot judges!

    Milhouse in reply to Geologist. | May 7, 2020 at 11:23 pm

    They didn’t accuse him of violating the Judicial code. They protested at his urging the judge, in an ex parte communication, to a particular substantive outcome, when he surely knows that the judge is prohibited from permitting or considering such communications.

    They also protested at his interjecting himself, as a member of the executive branch, into the internal proceedings of the judicial branch, by accusing the judge of an abuse of discretion.

    Whatever your view of the substantive issues in this case (and I suspect your view on that is the same as mine), from the point of view of judges this protest had to be written. If I were a judge I would have signed it, and I believe if you were one you would too, simply as a matter of duty to the institution of the judiciary. I would also have written to the judge that even if the AG shouldn’t have said so, he was correct that it was an abuse of discretion.

      tom_swift in reply to Milhouse. | May 8, 2020 at 4:06 am

      So . . . rather obvious abuse of the powers of office is A-OK just because it’s a judge doing it? That is, after all, what “independence” means—the power to be an abusive jerk while permitting no recourse. Personally, I’m with Lord Acton on this one; any government office has the power to corrupt. I see little virtue in preventing anyone else from doing something about it. Judges, naturally, would want to keep everything involving judgement to be confined to their own bailiwick; they’re just protecting their turf. That’s no reason for anyone else to play along.

Florida Gator | May 7, 2020 at 4:43 pm

Here is a link to the Texas Supreme Court Order!

At least Texas is still Texas. One can only hope Florida will remain Florida.

Joe-dallas | May 8, 2020 at 2:20 pm

An open & public letter to the court – by a non party is not ex-parte communication. Since the letter was a public letter, both the prosecution and the defendent had access to the communication & therefore not ex-parte.

You would think that at least one of the 14 judges would be aware of that – but apparantly not.