40ºF

WATCH: Judge Vonda Evans scolds Detroit rape defendant who swore at her in courtroom

Anthony Thornton curses at judge in courtroom

DETROIT – Judge Vonda Evans scolded a man charged in a criminal sexual conduct case who swore at her in a Detroit courtroom.

Anthony Thornton yelled "f--- you" at Evans during the trial Friday, and she responded to the outburst during the proceedings.

"I'm innocent ... f--- you! ... I'm innocent," Thornton yelled at the judge.

RELATEDJudge sets woman free after booting her from daughter's deadly DUI sentencing

"Be quiet!" Evans said. "Take him back. Take him out! Take him out now! ... I’m not even going to dignify that comment!"

Thornton was led out of the court room. Evans then explained he would be found not guilty of the kidnapping charge, but would be found guilty of criminal sexual conduct and unlawful imprisonment.

You can watch the full video of Evans scolding Thornton below.

Evans then had Thornton brought back into the court room so she could address him about his outburst.

"Just leave him standing!" Evans said. "Mr. Thornton, I’m going to address the comment you made. It was disrespectful for you to say, "F*** me!"

Thornton then apologized to the judge.

"I'm sorry," he said. "I appreciate you giving me the whole month of April to think about it. I understand your decision, I respect your decision. You have been doing this for a long time but … I just didn’t do it. I didn’t do the crime. That’s why I’m upset."

Evans expressed her disappointment over his conduct in court.

"I have never been anything but respectful to you, and for you to say 'F*** me' in my courtroom was unacceptable," Evans said. "Take him back."

Thornton, 46, of Port Huron, met a woman on April 20, 2010, at the Coalition of Temporary Shelter homeless shelter in Detroit. She went with him and two other men to an abandoned house to drink and smoke, police said.

Police said that when the woman tried to leave, Thornton and the other men held her down and took turns raping her. The woman had a rape kit collected, but the kit wasn't processed until March 20, 2015.

A combined DNA Index System hit identified Thornton as a suspect in the case, police said.

Thornton is also accused of overpowering and raping a woman on March 8, 2011, at his friend's home in Detroit. Police said the woman was invited to the home by Thornton's friend, but when she arrived, Thornton was the only person there.

Police said Thornton only stopped his attack when he heard someone at the door. The woman escaped through a back window and reported the crime. Her rape kit was recently processed and Thornton was against identified, officials said.

Thornton had been charged with three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, three counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, one count of kidnapping and two counts of unlawful imprisonment.

Thornton is scheduled to be sentenced June 16.

Stay with ClickOnDetroit.com for updates.


About the Authors: