Brevard County judge returns to work after courtroom fight

Judge required to take anger management after video shows altercation

By Justin Warmoth - Anchor

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. - The Brevard County judge that is accused of punching a public defender outside of a courtroom returned to work Monday.

Judge John Murphy and assistant public defender Andrew Weinstock got into the confrontation during a criminal court hearing June 2.

"If I had a rock, I would throw it at you right now. Stop pissing me off. Just sit down. I'll take care of it. I don't need your help. Sit down," said Murphy during the hearing.

"I'm the public defender and I have a right to be here and I have a right to stand and represent my client," replied Weinstock.

"I said sit down. If you want to fight, let's go out back and I'll just beat your ass," Murphy said.

Murphy took a 4-week leave of absence after the scuffle.

He was back to work Monday, but taking on a new role. He's now doing civil cases, rather than criminal - swapping divisions with another judge.

In court Monday, he heard divorce and eviction cases.

The civil cases are held in Titusville, so Murphy has a new courthouse to work at too.

After the fight, Murphy agreed to anger management courses, which, Local 6 was told he's still attending.

He declined a request for an interview, but Sunday he issued an apology to the residents of Brevard County saying in part:

"There may not be words strong enough to express the regret I have over my actions of June 2 - not because of the consequences to me but because it was wrong and may have tarnished the reputation of the entire judiciary."

It's unclear how long Murphy will oversee civil cases at the Titusville courthouse.

The Florida Bar said they're still investigating the incident.

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