Mayor Demeza Delhomme was arrested and forced to spend the night in jail after failing to unlock all the doors to a building hosting a children's day camp. The Associated Press reported on Aug. 2 that the mayor of Spring Valley in Rockland County, New York, was jailed and charged with contempt.
News 12 explained that the doors to the Kurtz Civic Center were supposed to be opened by Friday for the children's day camp, following a judge's order. However, Mayor Delhomme only opened the building and a few rooms inside.
State Supreme Court Justice Gerald Loehr ordered the mayor to open the building, and Delhomme said he had. But two trustees said some of the office doors were still locked, which prompted Delhomme's arrest.
“The judge so ordered for the mayor to follow a certain order and he didn’t and therefore he’s held in contempt,” Rockland County Sheriff Louis Falco told news outlets.
The judge found the mayor in contempt for not unlocking the doors and ordered Delhomme to the Rockland County jail. Delhomme's attorney says he is exploring every possible option to satisfy the court order, but is unsure as to when the mayor will be released.
According to information obtained by the Rockland County Times, Delhomme showed up late to the court date – after missing the prior court date altogether – and proceeded to bang on the wrong doors attempting to get into the courthouse. He then arrived at the bench with a considerable negative attitude, witnesses said, which may have contributed to the judge’s decision to put the mayor in jail.
Parents are outraged at the mayor for his thoughtless actions. One upset parent, Peter Lewis, whose 9-year-old daughter had been eagerly awaiting for her favorite summer camp to open, is pleased with the judge's decision.
“He’s right where he deserves to be,” Lewis said.
Delhomme was still in jail Saturday afternoon.