Via poem, judge dismisses inmate's suit over bathroom access

Save Story

Estimated read time: 1-2 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A judge used a five-stanza poem to dismiss an Ohio prisoner's lawsuit over bathroom access, writing that "neither runs nor constipation can justify this litigation."

Franklin County Judge David Cain concluded the inmate didn't have a case.

"You know, if he is going to file something that frivolous, he can't expect me to be too judicious in how I respond," Cain told The Columbus Dispatch ( ). "He can't expect me to take it seriously."

The inmate, Darek Lathan, alleged that he soiled himself and was ridiculed after a guard at the Correctional Reception Center in Orient refused his request to use an open restroom during recreation time one evening. He sued the state, seeking at least $2 million in damages.

Cain dismissed the case Thursday through written rhymes that summarized Lathan's allegations and the jurist's conclusions, including: "Claiming loss and shame to boot the plaintiff filed the present suit, but the law provideth no relief from such unmitigated grief."

Records show Lathan, 47, is now incarcerated elsewhere and had no attorney in the case who could comment on his behalf.

The judge, who started out as a journalist, said it took him about an hour to write the poem.

"We have to have some fun every once in a while in this job," Cain told the newspaper.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Most recent Features stories

The Associated Press


    Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the Trending 5.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast