Famed Cincinnati steakhouse operator Jeff Ruby, who operates several restaurants around Cincinnati and the midwest, was barred from the courtroom in the Drew Peterson trial today. The Cincinnati Enquirer has had good coverage of this angle. Apparently Ruby just gets so worked up he can’t help himself on these high-profile murder cases.
I have to say I really get a kick out of the story of him kicking O.J. Simpson out of his restaurant one time. That’s great, and he’s a private businessman, who’s got a right to refuse service to whoever he wants. However, I get concerned as he nearly inserts himself into the trial of a case. He’s attacked the Defense attorneys, who are doing their duty to defend their client. The system doesn’t work without Defense attorneys advocating zealously for their client: justice does not happen in our adversarial system without strong representation of the accused.
I know I’m not going to convince Mr. Ruby to moderate his views. The Enquirer article delineates why the issue is so personal to him, and I respect that. I would just hope that he would reciprocate the decorum and professionalism he decries the defense attorneys for not displaying. Two wrongs don’t make a right. And he’s well within his rights to decline to let them into his restaurants.