A Dallas salon owner jailed for seven days for refusing to shut down her business has received over $350,000 for her legal fees from supporters on a GoFundMe page.
Shelley Luther, owner and operation of Salon A La Mode, was sentenced to seven days in jail and a $7,000 fine by Judge Eric Moye, after she refused to admit to the judge that her motivation in keeping her salon open was “selfish," Town Hall reported.
Moye told her, ““If you would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge that your own actions were selfish, putting your own interest ahead of those in the community in which you live,” Moye said, he would consider giving her only a fine, but Shelley didn’t budge, CBS News Dallas reported.
Moye also told her she was to apologize and keep her salon closed until Friday, when it could open legally.
However, Luther refused, saying, “I have much respect for this court and laws. I have never been in this position before and it’s not someplace that I want to be. But I have to disagree with you sir, when you say that I’m selfish because feeding my kids is not selfish. I have hair stylists that are going hungry because they’d rather feed their kids. So sir, if you think the law is more important than kids getting fed, then please go ahead with your decision but I am not going to shut the salon.”
The sentence set off a furor, with Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton calling for Luther’s “immediate release” and saying, “I find it outrageous and out of touch that during this national pandemic, a judge, in a county that actually released hardened criminals for fear of contracting COVID-19, would jail a mother for operating her hair salon in an attempt to put food on her family’s table.
“The trial judge did not need to lock up Shelley Luther. His order is a shameful abuse of judicial discretion, which seems like another political stunt in Dallas. He should release Ms. Luther immediately.”
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott agreed, saying, “Compliance with executive orders during this pandemic is important to ensure public safety; however, surely there are less restrictive means to achieving that goal than jailing a Texas mother.”
Rick Hire, organizer of the GoFundMe page, said Luther was jailed for “not allowing herself to be shamed” and promised that her case will be appealed.
The website was filled with comments such as, “The government does not have the constitutional right to shut anyone down. We are not all lib-tards that need babysitting, and “America needs more Texans with the foresight, mettle and polite, yet respectful civil disobedience, of Shelley Luther standing for freedom.”
The page has raised $358,010 with a goal of raising $500,000 to fund appeals.
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