Judge Lila Statom has made a name for herself after her strongly worded response to a man charged with a gang-related shooting caught the media’s attention.
A video of her remarks (below), delivered at a hearing on April 16, has been viewed online over 450,000 times.
O’Shae Smith, 20, told the court that he shot a rival gang member last month for being in his “hood.”
“Sir, East Lake Courts is not your hood," Statom said. "It's the citizens of the United States who own that because they work and pay taxes; you don't own that.”
According to the Daily Mail, Statom intended to make clear with her strong rebuke that Smith could not intimidate the court with anything he said.
She also felt the need to defend those residents in the community not engaged in gang violence.
“It makes me upset because there are people that live in East Lake Court who get up and go to work every day," Statom told WRCV-TV. "They take their children to daycare."
“It was a nice place where you could walk around," she said in court. "People like you [Smith] have made it a violent, unsafe place to live."
Statom determined that there was probable cause in the incident, and the case is set to go before a grand jury.
Smith is being held without bond on charges of attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and possession of a firearm during the commission of a dangerous offense.