Judge accused of hitting attorney to seek anger management counseling

Chief Judge releases statement saying judge in fight will be on temporary leave


BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – A Brevard County judge accused of striking a public defender after a verbal confrontation in a courtroom will seek anger management counseling during a temporary leave of absence, according to court officials.

[READ: Statement from Chief Judge]

Judge John Murphy is accused of hitting Andrew Weinstock, according to the public defender's office, and the argument leading up to the fight was captured on video.

Chief Judge John M. Harris released a statement on Tuesday saying that he wanted to, "assure the public that yesterday's incident involving a county court judge and an assistant public defender is not something that will ever be tolerated in the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit."

Harris continued, saying the event "in no way reflects the typical manner that courtrooms in Brevard and Seminole counties are managed by the hardworking and conscientious judges in this circuit."

Murphy will have his pending cases temporarily reassigned to other judges, Harris said.

"People come to court seeking justice and a peaceful resolution to their conflicts and they have the right to expect a much higher standard of behavior from our judges than was exhibited in court yesterday," Harris wrote.