The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals typically is a collegial court — at least during oral arguments. But during Sept. 21 en banc arguments in United States v. Maria Delgado, 5th Circuit Chief Judge Edith Jones felt the need to tell Judge James Dennis to “shut up.” She later apologized.
As is common in en banc oral arguments before the 5th Circuit, lawyers on both sides had reserved time for questions from the judges. At the conclusion of the prosecutor’s argument in the drug case, Dennis was asking some hard questions of the government’s lawyer. According to the court’s recording of the argument (go to the 47:40 mark), the following exchange occurred:
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