Magistrate Orders Suspect: "Don't Be Stupid"

Donald Sebastian promised in court yesterday never to be stupid again. If he fails, he goes to jail.

Appearing in federal court in Cleveland on charges of impersonating a U.S. marshal, Sebastian was forced by a magistrate to make the unusual pledge.

Sebastian, 54, of Middleburg Heights, had with him a marshal's uniform when he was arrested this month. He had pulled over a motorist in Strongsville and even call ed po lice for backup, authorities say.

He later tried to buy business cards identifying himself as a marshal. Authorities wanted him in jail.

U.S. Magistrate David Perelman considered the government's case to be weak. "If I can't lock him up, I'll embarrass him," he said.

The magistrate handed Sebastian a scribbled note and ordered him to read it in court. As Sebastian rose to his feet, Perelman ordered him to "say it with sincerity."

"I promise that I won't do anything stupid," Sebastian said. "If I do anything stupid, I'll likely end up in pretrial detention."

Details here from The Cleveland Plain Dealer. (via El Chadder)