Judge Accepts Chicken Wings For Community Service

A Will County judge is forced to eat his words -- literally -- after offering to accept chicken in lieu of defendant's community service

By BJ Lutz
|  Thursday, Oct 29, 2009  |  Updated 6:23 PM CDT
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A Will County man told an associate judge in August that he'd completed his sentence of 100 hours of community service by working unpaid hours at a South Side Jamaican restaurant.

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We've heard of pay for play. Perhaps we can call this poultry-for-play.

A Will County man told an associate judge in August that he'd completed his sentence of 100 hours of community service by working unpaid hours at a South Side Jamaican restaurant.

Associate Judge Robert Livas told Darrius Logan, who had pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery and criminal trespass charges, to find another place to do the work or bring some chicken to court.

On Oct. 6, Logan did just that, returning to court with chicken, bread and hot sauce.

A transcript of the electronically recorded Aug. 4 hearing reads like this:

Livas said, "If you walk in with enough chicken to feed everybody, I'll accept these community service hours. If you don't, I'm not taking any of them."

"Does that come with slaw?" the judge later asked, according to the transcript.

"No," Logan replied. "It's just -- it's barbecue chicken, actually."

"That's great stuff," Livas said, later adding, "If you walk around there and feed everybody, it's going to be OK."

Livas claims the incident was simply a joke gone awry.

"A defendant took something I said as a joke literally," Livas said, according to the Chicago Tribune. "It forced me to keep my word and accept his original (community service) letter. I give him credit -- he made me eat my words.

Others, however, aren't taking the incident as lightly as Livas, saying it constitutes a violation of the judicial code of conduct.

The possible poultry-for-play incident has been "referred for review to the appropriate agency," a judicial circuit court judge said.

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