Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila, former defensive end for the Green Bay Packers, was surrounded by 10 cops and tasered at a Wisconsin courthouse on Tuesday.
According to Richard Ryman of the Green Bay Press-Gazette, the nine-year Green Bay veteran was in court in Brown County, Wisconsin, to sign a document related to his divorce. He had previously agreed to sign it, but apparently changed his mind once he got to court and refused to obey the judge’s order to sign.
After Gbaja-Biamila’s refusal, Judge Donald Zuidmulder sentenced him to six months in county jail for contempt and exited the courtroom. That’s when 10 police officers surrounded Gbaja-Biamila at the defense table to try to convince him to leave quietly and willingly consent to the judge’s arrest order.
Gbaja-Biamila wasn’t interested in consenting. The cops eventually had to taser him to get him into handcuffs, and were forced to strap him into a chair. Judge Zuidmulder then charged Gbaja-Biamila with resisting arrest. Gbaja-Biamila did eventually consent to sign the document, wiping out the contempt of court charge, but since he couldn’t go back in time and quietly allow himself to be arrested, that charge stayed and he was taken to jail.
The entire incident came after Gbaja-Biamila, representing himself, presented the famously unsuccessful sovereign citizen defense to Zuidmulder, arguing that civil law is subordinate to his religious beliefs. Gbaja-Biamila belongs to the Straitway Truth Ministry, which identifies itself as a Hebrew Israelite church.
Via the Press-Gazette, Gbaja-Biamila began the proceeding by saying, "I am not a citizen of the republic." He then went on to extensively quote the Old Testament and lecture Zuidmulder before proclaiming, "I have my own laws which are superior.”
Not surprisingly, Zuidmulder disagreed. A sovereign citizen defense has never prevailed in court, and Gbaja-Biamila didn’t change that. Gbaja-Biamila refused to sign the document he had previously agreed to sign, leading to the contempt charge and resisting arrest. According to the Press-Gazette, Gbaja-Biamila posted bail on Tuesday afternoon and was released.
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