Hamtramck council censures Judge for berating cancer patient

Hamtramck council censures Judge for berating cancer patient

Hamtramck’s City Council has censured the Hamtramck district judge who admonished a cancer patient earlier this month because of overgrown weeds near his home. 

The judge issued an apology last week and said she voluntarily reported her behavior to the judicial tenure commission. On Tuesday, the council addressed the incident in a resolution pointing to the impact on the city’s image.

In a unanimous vote, the six-member council approved a resolution, 5-0, that said “Judge Alexis Krot’s callous actions has shined a negative light on the city of Hamtramck.” One councilman was not at the meeting during the vote.

During a Jan. 10 hearing, Krot, of 31st District Court in Hamtramck, blasted Burhan Chowdhury, 72, who has cancer, for having some overgrown weeds outside his Hamtramck home.

She threatened twice to jail him, saying he should be ashamed of himself, and fined him $100.

A video of the online hearing that was posted on social media showed Chowdhury appearing to wheeze and gasp for breath as he tried to explain to the judge he was ill. A son of Chowdhury said they had already cleaned up the weeds.

Judge Alexis Krot

“I am a cancer patient, very old, ma’am,” Chowdhury said. “I was then very weak. … I cannot look after this thing.”

The video drew widespread condemnation. A petition on Change.org calling for Krot’s removal from the bench drew more than 255,000 signatures as of Wednesday afternoon.

The council’s resolution noted that Hamtramck has “one of the most diverse populations of any city in the United States” and that “all of the residents of Hamtramck deserve fair and impartial treatment from the justice system.”

Ferne Dekker

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