Lawyers who have a hard time keeping a poker face when they don’t like a judge’s ruling can take heart in a decision issued last week by the Georgia Court of Appeals.

A three-judge panel has tossed a ruling by a veteran Henry County Juvenile Court judge that found a lawyer in contempt for making what the judge called a “sarcastic” face at him. Chief Judge A.J. “Buddy” Welch Jr. had ordered Ella A. S. Hughes to jail for the offense, but on Tuesday an appeals panel reversed, in part on the grounds that the judge didn’t give the lawyer an opportunity to fight a possible contempt finding.

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