A judge warned people about “mocking” his court after a loud ‘yawn’ was heard in the public gallery on one of the hottest days of the year.
District Judge Nigel Broderick was speaking at Ballymena Magistrates Court on Thursday.
With the mercury soaring, mechanical fans were switched on in the courtroom and doors were kept open in a bid to allow cooler air to circulate.
However, almost two hours into proceedings, a loud ‘yawn’ sound emanated from the public gallery.
Around twenty people were sitting in the area at the time.
The noise was heard by the judge who asked who did it. There was no response.
The judge then said: “If I catch somebody deliberately yawning and mocking the court they will be put out.”
It was not established if it was a genuine yawn or not.
By 1.30pm there had been no further yawning incidents.
One person present told ‘Ballymena Daily’: “In my opinion the judge had every right to be suspicious. The way the ‘yawn’ sounded you would have to say it possibly was put on or exaggerated at the very least.
“A short time after the judge’s comments a couple of people left the courtroom.”