DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A Dallas salon owner who opened her business in violation of the governor’s executive order is now in jail.
A judge Tuesday found Shelley Luther in civil and criminal contempt of court for ignoring a temporary restraining order prohibiting her from operating her salon.
Judge George Moye sentenced her to 7 days behind bars, one for each day she opened the doors to Salon A La Mode in Far North Dallas.
Outside the George Allen Courts Building, a small group of supporters gathered with flags and guns to watch the hearing on their phones.
Inside the court told Luther she could not ignore the orders of elected officials because she personally disagreed with them. “You do not have a right to independently supersede state law,” said Judge Moye.
Over the past two weeks, Luther openly defied the governor’s mandate that salons remain closed, ripped up a cease and desist letter from the county in front of a cheering crowd, and disregarded the judge’s order
“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,” Judge Moye said, offering her a chance to avoid jail time. He said he would consider only giving her a fine, if she apologized, acknowledged she was wrong, and agreed to keep her business closed until Friday, when the governor has announced all salons may open.
Luther, though, refused to yield. “I have to disagree with you, sir, when you say I am selfish because feeding my kids is not selfish,” she responded. “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.”
Luther’s attorney, Warren Norred, vowed to appeal the decision. He said the salon would likely continue to open its doors, increasing the $3,500 fine against it by $500 each day it does before the governor’s new order takes effect Friday.