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Celebratory slap costs Chad Johnson 30 days in jail

June 10, 2013|By Sam Farmer
  • Former NFL star Chad Johnson was sentenced the 30 days in jail on Monday.
Former NFL star Chad Johnson was sentenced the 30 days in jail on Monday. (Henry Romero / Associated…)

A playful slap on his lawyer’s backside has earned Chad Johnson far more than a slap on the wrist.

Johnson, a former NFL star, was sentenced Monday to 30 days in jail for a probation violation in a domestic-violence case after a judge in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., rejected his plea bargain. It seemed as if the judge was about to go along with the no-jail agreement, but reversed her field when Johnson lightly slapped his attorney’s rear in celebration.

“I don’t know that you’re taking this whole thing seriously,” Broward Circuit Judge Kathleen McHugh said, according to the Associated Press. “I just saw you slap your attorney on the backside. Is there something funny about this? The whole courtroom was laughing. I’m not going to accept these plea negotiations. This isn’t a joke.”

Johnson apologized, saying: “This is your courtroom. I have no intent to make this a joke. It’s not funny. My life is in a shambles right now and I try my best to laugh and keep a smile on my face.”

That did not sway the judge, who had the option of sentencing Johnson up to a year in jail.

Johnson, who was a star with the Cincinnati Bengals before finishing his career with stints in New England and Miami, was on probation after pleading no contest last August to head-butting his then-wife, Evelyn Lozada, a reality-show star.


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