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Man imprisoned for phone issue in courtroom

OKLAHOMA CITY - A man’s cell phone landed him in a jail cell after it went off while court was in session.

News 4 caught up with the man seconds after he walked out from being locked up.

“Well this is bull crap,” Robert Mallet said. “I should be able to leave. Shouldn’t I be able to leave?'

Robert Mallet did leave but he walked away in handcuffs.

“I was taken aback,” Mallet said. “I started breathing heavy. I couldn’t believe it.”

Mallet started off as a spectator inside Judge Kendra Coleman’s courtroom.

He says he drove his girlfriend to her court appearance when he got a wake up call from the law.

“I was the third person’s phone that went off, yeah,” Mallet said.

Court documents say Tuesday Mallet’s phone rang while court was in session.

He said he tried to silence it.

But according to Judge Coleman, Mallet “refused to stop talking and was disrespectful to the court."

“I might have complained a little too loudly about it,” Mallett said.

His punishment was five days in the Oklahoma County Jail.

“This is why it’s overcrowded,” Mallet said. “They are throwing people in jail for no reason.”

Lucky for him, his time was cut short.

The public defender’s office caught wind of the incident and called it “illegal incarceration.”

Mallet met face-to-face with the judge who put him behind bars in the first place.

Records show Mallet “apologized for his actions” and the judge “acknowledged she did not give him an opportunity to be heard.”

"It's ridiculous,” Mallet said.

Come Friday morning days after his nightmare began, Mallett walked out a free man.

“I gotta find a ride home,” Mallet said.

Mallett said he is still without a phone, as it’s in the hands of the Oklahoma County Court Clerk.

News 4 reached out to Judge Colemen. She did not want to comment on the incident.

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