Contempt of court

The creator of Phonehenge, a collection of oddball structures I’ve previously written about, has been sent to jail for disobeying a court order to demolish the buildings which were built in violation of numerous codes.  Contempt of court is a useful procedure that is used when a person disobeys a court order.  The court usually imposes a fine or jail until the person complies with the order of court.  This is probably the most powerful tool that exists to force defendants to comply with the code.  While I have filed many petitions for rule to show cause why a defendant should not be held in contempt of court, very few people have failed to comply and a tiny amount have actually been jailed.  Just the threat of going to jail is usually sufficient to inspire a defendant to comply. Mr. Fahey, the defendant in the California case, has been defiant, according to the court.  Defendants can be jailed for violating court orders even though jail time is not a possibility for the offense itself.  Contempt requires a separate procedure from the code violation.

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