Top judge sets courtroom attire guidelines to maintain dress decorum

By Buck Collier, Special Correspondent
Posted 10/15/20

HERMANN — Dressing down by residents attending a court proceeding, or appearing before a judge, has drawn a decree from the 20th Circuit Court’s top jurist on proper attire.

In an …

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Top judge sets courtroom attire guidelines to maintain dress decorum

Posted

HERMANN — Dressing down by residents attending a court proceeding, or appearing before a judge, has drawn a decree from the 20th Circuit Court’s top jurist on proper attire.

In an administrative order issued Sept. 30 to the circuit courts in Gasconade, Franklin and Osage counties, Presiding Judge I. I. “Ike” Lamke has taken on a role more akin to high school principals in setting down a dress code for those attending a court proceeding. The order is posted at the main entrance of the Gasconade County Courthouse.

In the order, Lamke said that as of Sept. 30 all civilians — non-court personnel — in a courtroom either as a direct participant in a case, a witness or an observer in the audience “shall wear appropriate attire while attending a court proceeding” and shall not wear any of the following items:

• Shorts or short pants above the knee.

• Sleeveless shirts or blouses, tank tops, tube tops or other strapless types of shirts or blouse.

• See-through tops.

• Clothing that exposes the midriff, chest, buttocks or underwear.

• Pants that fall below the waist.

• Clothing with an emblem or wording that promotes illegal or inappropriate activity.

• Clothing that depicts or promotes violence, sex acts, illegal drug use or profanity.

• Such other closing deemed inappropriate by the judge presiding over the court proceeding.

Lamke’s order said that any person dressed inappropriately may be barred from the courtroom and this may result in rescheduling of the proceeding, a warrant being issued for failure to appear, or a default judgment being entered in a civil case.

Each judge of the respective courtrooms will establish a protocol with the courtroom bailiff regarding enforcement of the administrative order.

Lamke is the 20th Circuit's Division 2 judge and, as the circuit’s presiding judge, oversees the operations of the associate and circuit courts in the three counties that comprise this regional court system.

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