On last Wednesday’s show cause hearing where Bill Schmalfeldt was to answer for breaking the court rules in recording testimony while on Skype, the Judge commented about his inclination to actually have the Show Cause hearing at the beginning of the Hoge v. Kimberlin, et al, trial.
The Dread Pirate Zombie was in the courtroom taking notes and paraphrased Judge Hecker saying (emphasis added):
Although it would have been interesting to see in person the tale Bill Schmalfeldt would have told the Judge as to why, precisely, he was not subject to 10-3208 […], it is now a matter that will be decided during the first day of the trial. The Judge indicated that he didn’t think it would take up an enormous amount of time and didn’t need to be scheduled differently – and it seemed that in hindsight his first inclination to schedule the hearing for then might have been better.
This caught my eye and I began to wonder: What would make Judge Hecker believe that this should have been scheduled at the beginning of trial in the first place?
Schmalfeldt had asked for, and was granted, the privilege of using Skype after claiming that destitution and illness as reasons for a couple of hearings. One of those hearings was for him to show cause as to why he failed to answer discovery. This was the hearing where Schmalfeldt broke the rules.
It seems reasonable that because Schmalfeldt kept asking for Skype hearings, and failing in them miserably, Judge Hecker was already questioning Schmalfeldt’s credibility and so he was pondering his options.
Holding the hearing in late June, this would cause Schmalfeldt to have to appear and, at that point, the Judge would be able to ask him directly so he could size up Schmalfeldt and his truthfulness.
If Schmalfeldt appeared, the Judge might have just said, “Don’t do it again” with some minor conditions. At least Schmalfeldt would have shown he listens to the court when told to do so and would accept the consequences as a man for his infractions of court rules. By that reasoning, he would have dismissed his inclination as incorrect.
The fact that he still failed to provide discovery after the hearing he taped where, ironically, he was told to follow Maryland Rules, and that he shared information on the internet later that was obviously discovery material (and most likely has much more), only supports the growing body of evidence to Judge Hecker that Schmalfeldt has lost significant credibility with the court.
It will be very interesting to watch Hecker’s response when it comes out in court that Schmalfeldt posted evidence on the internet he was suppose to provide in discovery even though he claimed he didn’t have any.
Schmalfeldt’s retreat into the ADA to skip the Show Cause hearing was just a sideshow issue raised by him to give him an excuse not to show via the court of public opinion. That excuse is not a viable defense in front of Judge Hecker. He had an obligation to travel to Westminster for a lawful court order.
Since Schmalfeldt refused to attend, Judge Hecker stated for the record:
The petition raises an issue that is not an issue that prejudices the parties, but it raises concerns that directly impact the integrity and dignity of the Court.
Schmalfeldt, confused as always, believes the Judge meant it for Hoge, and says something really dumb:
It seems as though Schmalfeldt fails to understand that just because he impugned the dignity of the court, that somehow there must be an immediate and consequential ruling. He thinks this ruling must be an obvious “SCHMALFELDT MUST BE ARRESTED” order. This is why he fails in REAL court.
Hecker, in fact, made an immediate and consequential ruling. Judge Hecker has put him in a box. If Schmalfeldt doesn’t show for trial, he risks a default judgment of millions of dollars, as well as possible punishment for breaking court rules. Such a judgment will have serious consequences on his life.
And even if he shows up, he has a rather large hole to dig out of. He now has to give his internet defense of the ADA to Judge Hecker. The hilarity of that testimony is gonna be off the charts, assuming he is a man and shows up in court.
It’s either fight for your case where you defend your actions as a man, which he has yet to do in this case (on Twitter Court, the case was dismissed a long time ago), or put yourself in a position where you cannot avoid any damaging consequences.
Judge Hecker, in not following his inclinations, and Schmalfeldt’s actions, may have cost Schmalfeldt any kind of win.
Unless your strategy to win is to impugn the Judge and court, especially on the internet.