Lawyer’s Pants Catch on Fire During Trial
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Stephen Gutierrez. Photo courtesy of Naples Herald.

Summary: In an ironic twist or a campy move, a defense attorney’s pants caught on fire during an arson case. 

If you don’t want your jury to think you’re a liar, then you better not let your pants catch on fire!


That’s what happened to defense attorney Stephen Gutierrez, 28. While giving his closing argument in a trial on Wednesday, his pants miraculously started to flame. Smoke billowed out of his pocket, and he ran out of the room. When he returned, his pants were singed, and he said the flame was due to him fiddling with his pocket, where a faulty e-cigarette went rogue.

The irony of the story is that Gutierrez was defending an arsonist, Claudy Charles, 48, who was accused of setting his own car on fire. In court, Gutierrez argued that the car had spontaneously combusted, and during his closing, he appeared to show that that could actually happen!

But prosecutors were suspicious that Gutierrez was putting on a show for the jury, and they considered charging him with contempt of court. He insisted that the fire was real.

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Regardless of the crazy accident, the jury found the defendant guilty of second-degree arson.

Do you think Gutierrez’s pants caught on fire as part of his defense or was it a real accident? Let us know in the comments below.


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