The Most Vulgar Courtroom Exchange in American History

In my book, The Law Says What?, I dedicate some time to highlighting the quirky (and distinctly human) exchanges that often take place in the courtroom. Although typically thought of as a bastion of solemnity and seriousness, the courtroom is actually frequently the scene of absurdity, hilarity, and straight up shenanigans. Fortunately for us, American courtrooms keep track of (almost) every word that is uttered in a courtroom, in the form of word-for-word transcripts taken down by the court reporter.


Among the most vulgar exchanges to ever take place (and, in my bold opinion, the most vulgar) is the interaction between Judge Bryant Durham of Floyd County, Georgia and defendant Denver Fenton Allen. The transcript that follows is so vulgar and obscene it was actually deemed too inappropriate for my book! I tried hard to get it in there, but my publisher wouldn't even consider it. I caution you now: it is truly not for those with fragile sensibilities.


Here's the brief background: Allen was in prison after being convicted of making terroristic threats. At some point during this sentence, he allegedly beat a fellow inmate to death and was charged with murder. While defending against the murder charge, Allen had disagreements with his publicly-appointed attorney. During a pretrial scheduling hearing, Allen expressed to Judge Durham that he wanted to change his attorney before his trial. The rest, you must simply read for yourself. And so here it is:


THE COURT: Okay. Mr.-Mr. Allen?

MR. ALLEN: Right.

THE COURT: I believe that-I believe your case is-was going to be going to trial not this Monday but the following Monday. Okay. Do you understand that?

MR. ALLEN: Yes. Uh-

THE COURT: Okay. I tell you if you needed to tell me something, I want-I'll let you come up here to the podium so you can speak into the microphone, and I can hear you.

[The defendant approached the podium.]

MR. ALLEN: Yes. The attorney here, I'm wanting to fire him.

THE COURT: Uh-huh [affirmative].

MR. ALLEN: And, you know, I don't feel like he's doing any-

THE COURT: Who are you going to-who are you going to hire?

MR. ALLEN: I'm not going to hire nobody. I'm going to try to get a different public defender.

THE COURT: There isn't-you-you have a right to an attorney.

MR. ALLEN: This lawyer has-

THE COURT: You don't have a right to a specific attorney.

MR. ALLEN: This lawyer has made sexual advancements on me. He-

THE COURT: Well-

MR. ALLEN: He's mis-misrepresenting my case. He told me if-if I wanted him to do a good job, I had to let him give me oral sex. He's had doctors at Central State Hospital put a false-

THE COURT: He's had doctors at Central State Hospital?

MR. ALLEN: -put a false diagnosis on me.

THE COURT: Okay.

MR. ALLEN: Uh-

THE COURT: I don't-you know, I know Mr. Wyatt [defense attorney] pretty well, and I don't think he has the ability to make doctors at Central State do anything.

MR. ALLEN: Well, they did it, and he's the one that had me sent down there.

THE COURT: Well, they may have done it, but I don't think he had anything to do with it.

MR. ALLEN: All right. Well, he won't give me the discovery.

THE COURT: He- well, I’m-

MR. ALLEN: There's things in discovery he's supposed to give-he gave me the indictment and told me that was discovery.

THE COURT: Okay.

MR. ALLEN: They’re altering-

THE COURT: Okay.

MR. ALLEN: -documents that I've read-

THE COURT: If you-if you want-if you want the indictment, I’ll make sure you get a copy of the indictment.

MR. ALLEN: No. I'm saying I got the indictment-

THE COURT: Uh-huh [affirmative].

MR. ALLEN: -but he's-he's not complying with discovery.

THE COURT: Okay.

MR. ALLEN: I'm supposed to get the autopsy report, the coroner report, pictures of the crime scene-

THE COURT: Coroner report?

MR. ALLEN: -criminal background records. I want-

THE COURT: Is this a murder?

DEPUTY SHERIFF: In the county jail.

THE COURT: Okay.

MR. ALLEN: Yeah. I supposed to get criminal background records, investigational summaries.

THE COURT: Mr. Wyatt, what discovery do you have?

MR. WYATT: I've given him everything I have.

THE COURT: You've given him everything you have?

MR. WYATT: Yes, sir.

THE COURT: He's given you everything-

MR. ALLEN: This is a murder case, and you're-

THE COURT: Huh?

MR. ALLEN: This is a murder case, and you're telling me the only thing on discovery is a four-page indictment.

THE COURT: I don't think he's saying that. I think he said he's given you everything that he has.

MR. ALLEN: He ain't give me the autopsy report. He ain't give me the coroner's report. He ain't give me­

THE COURT: Well, it may be that he doesn't have that. I don't know.

MR. ALLEN: That's what I've been trying to get. He didn't give me pictures of the crime scene. I've seen other people go to trial on-on murder charges. I've seen what you're supposed to get. I'm not going to work with this attorney.

THE COURT: Well, you know, you-you-

MR. ALLEN: It's not-it's not going to happen.

THE COURT: You've got-you've got-

MR. ALLEN: I'm not going to trial with this attorney.

THE COURT: Well, you've got two choices. One, you can go to trial with him, or, two, you can try the case yourself. Now, I definitely, completely think that that's-

MR. ALLEN: I've got a right to have-

THE COURT: Wait a minute. Listen to me. That would be the biggest mistake you've ever made in your life.

MR. ALLEN: So basically you're sitting here telling me-

THE COURT: Now, you have a-

MR. ALLEN: -you're going to find me guilty if I-if I go to trial and try to defend myself?

THE COURT: You're probably right. That would be my guess if you try to defend yourself. You-you don't know anything about selecting a jury, do you?

MR. ALLEN: No.

THE COURT: Do you know anything about cross­ examining witnesses?

MR. ALLEN: No.

THE COURT: Do you know anything about criminal procedure?

MR. ALLEN: I know I don't have to let­

THE COURT: Do you know anything-I'm-

MR. ALLEN: -this guy suck my dick­

THE COURT: Let-let-let me-let me-let-

MR. ALLEN: -to get some legal representation.

THE COURT: You know something, I'll be honest, Mr. Allen, I really don't believe that.

MR. ALLEN: I'm not-I'm not concerned if you believe it or not.

THE COURT: I-you know, I-

MR. ALLEN: But I'm-I'm supposed to-I'm supposed to have a right to get an attorney-

THE COURT: That-

MR. ALLEN: -and I'm not going to work with this attorney.

THE COURT: Well, that's up to you.

MR. ALLEN: So I hold myself in contempt if you try to pull me up here to court with that attorney.

THE COURT: That-that's fine. I mean, that's up to you. You-I told you what your choices are. You can go to trial-

MR. ALLEN: I'm-I'm just telling you. Well-

THE COURT: Lis-listen to me.

MR. ALLEN: -I'll just hold myself in contempt.

THE COURT: Listen to me.

MR. ALLEN: Fuck you.

THE COURT: Listen to me.

MR. ALLEN: Go fuck yourself. I'm through here. Are y' all done?

THE COURT: I-I am finding- I'm finding you in contempt of court.

MR. ALLEN: I don't care.

THE COURT: I know you don't. And I sentence you to twenty days for that. And if you say anything else, I'm going to add twenty days for everything you say.

MR. ALLEN: Fuck you.

THE COURT: Forty days.

MR. ALLEN: Fuck you again.

THE COURT: Sixty.

MR. ALLEN: Go fuck yourself.

THE COURT: A year.

MR. ALLEN: Your mamma.

THE COURT: Ten years.

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick.

THE COURT: You know something, this is going to be an interesting trial.

MR. ALLEN: Oh, yeah?

THE COURT: Oh, yeah.

MR. ALLEN: You're not supposed to smile in court. You know that if you smile-

THE COURT: I can smile anytime I want to.

MR. ALLEN: - it's a violation-Now, you're cussing and yelling at me.

THE COURT: I have not cussed.

MR. ALLEN: Yeah, you did.

THE COURT: I am yelling.

MR. ALLEN: Well, go fuck yourself. Suck my dick.

THE COURT: That's why I'm yelling.

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick.

THE COURT: You know something, you are absolutely the rudest person I think I've­

MR. ALLEN: You reckon­

THE COURT: -ever met.

MR. ALLEN: You reckon if I let you suck my dick that I could get a fair trial here?

THE COURT: Oh, I don't think so.

MR. ALLEN: I got a big dick now, and if I pull it out-

THE COURT: I don't think that's going to get you a fair trial unless you have­

MR. ALLEN: I'm done.

THE COURT: -every one of the jurors do it.

MR. ALLEN: I don't think that mouth is big enough, sir. I've got a big old donkey dick.

THE COURT: You know, I'm sure mine's-I'm sure mine's not.

MR. ALLEN: I've got a big old donkey dick for that ass.

THE COURT: Good! I'm sure the women love it.

MR. ALLEN: I don't fuck girls.

THE COURT: Oh, oh, no. I'm sorry.

MR. ALLEN: I fuck boys.

THE COURT: Oh, I'm sorry. You prefer men.

MR. ALLEN: I fuck boys.

THE COURT: You prefer men; right?

MR. ALLEN: I fuck white-white boys.

THE COURT: You-oh, oh, white or black?

MR. ALLEN: White boys.

THE. COURT: Oh. Butt boys?

MR. ALLEN: With big butts.

THE COURT: Oh, of course. You know, you look like a queer.

MR. ALLEN: Well, okay. So now you're calling me a queer in the courtroom.

THE COURT: I didn't call you one. I said you looked like one.

MR. ALLEN: You're yelling.

THE COURT: Do you understand the English language?

MR. ALLEN: Wait, you're yelling. You're laughing.

THE COURT: Do you understand the English language?

MR. ALLEN: This is-this-this is kangaroo court, sir.

THE COURT: Do you-you know what. No, we're not in Australia.

MR. ALLEN: I mean, if you want to suck my dick, you can do it anytime now. We can-

THE COURT: Oh-

MR. ALLEN: -get this court-ordered­

THE COURT: -you're-you're so smart.

MR. ALLEN: Do we have to court-order this?

THE COURT: You're so funny. You're so cute.

MR. ALLEN: Can we get a court order to get my dick sucked, sir?

THE COURT: You're so cute. I know all the inmates just love you to death.

MR. ALLEN: Oh, yeah.

THE COURT: Oh, I bet.

MR. ALLEN: All the white butt boys love me to death, too.

THE COURT: Okay. Well, I'll bet they do, and I bet all the rest of them do, too.

MR. ALLEN: You ain't supposed to smile in court.

THE COURT: I'll bet everybody enjoys sucking your cock.

MR. ALLEN: You ain't supposed to be smiling in court. That's a violation-

THE COURT: I can smile anytime I dadgum want to.

MR. ALLEN: Now, you're yelling at me again.

THE COURT: I am. I'm yelling.

MR. ALLEN: You're getting mad.

THE COURT: Can you hear me?

MR. ALLEN: You're shaking.

THE COURT: I am yelling at you.

MR. ALLEN: Well, reckon you could suck my dick?

THE COURT: Yelling.

MR. ALLEN: Can you take a break?

THE COURT: Yelling.

MR. ALLEN: Can you take a break?

THE COURT: I am yelling at you.

MR. ALLEN: Can you take a break?

THE COURT: Yelling.

MR. ALLEN: Can I get my dick sucked?

THE COURT: Can you hear me? Yelling.

MR. ALLEN: Can I get my dick sucked?

THE COURT: Yelling. Yelling.

MR. ALLEN: Are you ready to suck now? Have you got it all out?

THE COURT: You know something-

MR. ALLEN: You will, but you want me to fuck you in the butt then; right?

THE COURT: Oh, my goodness. You've got plenty of that over in the jail.

MR. ALLEN: I could see it in you when I come in the courtroom.

THE COURT: Okay. That's fine. You're going to be here on-let me tell you how this is going to work. You're going to be-

MR. ALLEN: You ain't going to tell me shit.

THE COURT: Listen.

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick.

THE COURT: Shut up. Listen to me.

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick, you fuckman.

THE COURT: Listen!

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick.

THE COURT: You will be here in court on Mon-

MR. ALLEN: You'll be here sucking my dick.

THE COURT: You will listen to me, now.

MR. ALLEN: Go fuck yourself.

THE COURT: Okay. I'm going to tell you how this is going to work. You either listen or not. I don't care.

MR. ALLEN: I'm through. Can I leave the courtroom?

THE COURT: No.

DEPUTY SHERIFF: [Mr. Allen tries to leave] No, you've got to stay here.

MR. ALLEN: No, I'm not talking to the bastard.

THE COURT: We are going to have the trial Monday week.

MR. ALLEN: No. The fuck we are. I ain't going to trial with this lawyer present.

THE COURT: Listen, if you do not-

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick, you stinking-ass cracker.

THE COURT: If you act like this-if you act like this, I will send you out of the courtroom­

MR. ALLEN: Old bitch-ass cracker.

THE COURT: -and leave you out of the courtroom during the trial.

MR. ALLEN: Horse-ass cracker.

THE COURT: Do you understand that?

MR. ALLEN: Horse-ass, dick-sucking-ass-

THE COURT: Do you understand that?

MR. ALLEN: -big butt-

THE COURT: Do you understand that?

MR. ALLEN: -fuckman-ass cracker.

THE COURT: Do you understand that?

MR. ALLEN: Getting mad, ain't you?

THE COURT: Stupid.

MR. ALLEN: Or red-faced?

THE COURT: Listen!

MR. ALLEN: Now, you're calling me stupid.

THE COURT: Listen! Yes, I am.

MR. ALLEN: This is kangaroo court.

THE COURT: You know what, you have a constitutional right to be a dumbass.

MR. ALLEN: Why don't you jump up on the stand and-

THE COURT: You have a constitutional right to be a dumbass.

MR. ALLEN: -and jump around like a fucking kangaroo, you dumb bastard?

THE COURT: Well, if you-

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick. I ain't-

THE COURT: -if you-if you-

MR. ALLEN: -listening to nothing you say.

THE COURT: If you come in here Monday week and-

MR. ALLEN: How about this? I'll kill your whole family. When I get in this trial, I will murder your whole family. I'll cut your children up into pieces. I'll knock their brains out with a fucking hammer and feed them to you.

THE COURT: Are-are you taking this down?

COURT REPORTER: Yes, sir.

THE COURT: Okay. I am going to refer you to the district attorney's office.

MR. ALLEN: I don't give a fuck who you're referring to.

THE COURT: I-I'm just telling you.

MR. ALLEN: I thought you were referring to my motherfucking dick, fuckman.

THE COURT: Aggra-aggravated-aggravated assault, terroristic threats, and we'll just add to it.

MR. ALLEN: I don't give a fuck. I will murder you, your whole family, your kids. I'm not supposed to be in jail. I was framed. That motherfucker asked me to eat his ass for a bag of coffee.

THE COURT: Well, you know-

MR. ALLEN: - and now you're telling me that I've got to-I got to go to trial with this fuckman over here.

THE COURT: You're obviously-

MR. ALLEN: He's probably a pedophile.

THE COURT: You're obviously fixated on butts and dicks.

MR. ALLEN: Huh? I'm fixated on your mouth.

THE COURT: No, you're fixated on butts and dicks.

MR. ALLEN: You've got a nasty mouth, sir.

THE COURT: Oh, I have an awful mouth.

MR. ALLEN: You have a big old fat mouth.

THE COURT: I do.

MR. ALLEN: You got to have a big old mouth to get this dick in it.

THE COURT: I sure do.

MR. ALLEN: All right.

THE COURT: Yep. I'm proud of it.

MR. ALLEN: I'll make sure the next time I come to court-

THE COURT: I-

MR. ALLEN: -I'll pull it out and jack on you.

THE COURT: Okay. Why don't you do that right now?

MR. ALLEN: I jack on white boys-

THE COURT: Why don't you do it right now?

MR. ALLEN: -just like I jack on females.

THE COURT: Do it now.

MR. ALLEN: I can't do it now.

THE COURT: Do it now.

MR. ALLEN: I ain't got-I ain't got but-

THE COURT: I don't care.

MR. ALLEN: Take off the cuffs.

THE COURT: How many hands do you have to have to do it.

MR. ALLEN: Take off the cuffs.

THE COURT: Come on-no. Jack off.

MR. ALLEN: This is kangaroo court.

THE COURT: Come on. Jack off.

MR. ALLEN: This is- this is a kangaroo court.

THE COURT: Jack off right now.

MR. ALLEN: Are y' all getting this?

THE COURT: Yes, they're getting it.

MR. ALLEN: I'm-I' m-I'm going to make sure. This guy done called me stupid. This motherfucker done told me he was going suck my dick.

THE COURT: I did not say that.

MR. ALLEN: He wanted me to fuck him in the butt.

THE COURT: I did not say that either.

MR. ALLEN: Uh, you're a-you're a real, real nasty-ass judge. This is

THE COURT: I am indeed, and you're going to find out-

MR. ALLEN: Now-

THE COURT: -how nasty I really am.

MR. ALLEN: You'll find out how nasty I am when I murder your whole family, bitch.

THE COURT: Oh, that's fine. You know, you'll be in jail so long you won't have a chance.

MR. ALLEN: The babies will be going, "Daddy, Daddy, help me." I'm just going to knock their brains out with a fucking hammer.

THE COURT: Okay. Well, you know, if I had any kids, you'd probably be able to do that, but since I don't have any, it doesn't really matter.

MR. ALLEN: Well, then I'll get your nieces, your nephews, your sisters.

THE COURT: It doesn't really matter. I don't have any of those either.

MR. ALLEN: Grandkids.

THE COURT: Don't have any of those either.

MR. ALLEN: Aunties, aunts.

THE COURT: How can I have grandkids if I don't have any kids?

MR. ALLEN: Brothers, sisters?

THE COURT: Stupid. You know, you-you're just completely, completely have no idea of the English language.

MR. ALLEN: If you're not going to suck my dick, sir, I don't-I don't want to be here.

THE COURT: Okay. I've enjoyed this. I hope you have. I know everybody else in the courtroom has enjoyed it, but you can go now, and if-

MR. ALLEN: All right. Well, I-

THE COURT: -if on Monday week this happens again, you will not stay in the courtroom.

MR. ALLEN: Suck my dick, sir.

THE COURT: Okay.

[The defendant was escorted out of the courtroom, and these proceedings were concluded at 2:19 p.m. on Friday, June 17, 2016.]


If you're wondering what happened to Judge Durham, the answer is: not much. He was formally admonished by the Georgia Bar Association and agreed to undergo counseling for anger management. But that's it! He still kept his lofty position on the bench.