July 26, 2013

After two years in courts, bathroom-mess case ends

A Portland man loses his second appeal of a conviction that he deliberately smeared his feces inside a U.S. District courthouse.

By Eric Russell erussell@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

Chief Judge Sandra Lynch agreed with earlier decisions that Strong acted willfully in soiling the bathroom and wrote that statute requires posting of regulations in a conspicuous place. The regulations in the courthouse were posted on the wall next to the clerk's office door, a door Strong had passed multiple times before.

"It is also relevant that the defendant did not report the state of the bathroom to anyone," the decision read. "And, at the time, Strong had twice lost on a Social Security case in the district court."

Judge Juan Torruella was the sole dissenter, and appeared to note the absurdity of the case in his minority opinion.

"The momentous importance of this case surely forecasts its deserved place in the annals of federal prosecutorial history," he wrote. He added that "(it is) unreasonable to infer willfulness from the fact that Strong did not report the incident. The reasonable inference to draw from this fact is that Strong was embarrassed of what had transpired."

Katherine Essington, a Providence attorney who represented Strong on appeal, did not return calls for comment.

No one on Tuesday answered a phone number listed for Strong in court documents.

 

Eric Russell can be contacted at 791-6344 or at:

erussell@pressherald.com

Twitter: @PPHEricRussell

 

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