Texas Supreme Court orders jailed Dallas salon owner released

Shelley Luther jailed Tuesday for not apologizing to judge for repeatedly flouting emergency order

This Tuesday, May 5, 2020 booking photo provided by the Dallas County Sheriff's Office shows Shelly Luther. Luther was ordered to spend a week in jail after she continued to operate her business despite being issued a citation last month for keeping open her Dallas salon due to restrictions put in place because of the coronavirus pandemic. Luther's hearing occurred as Texas Gov. Greg Abbott relaxed more restrictions statewide, allowing barbershops and hair salons to reopen Friday. (Dallas County Sheriff's Office via AP) (Uncredited, Dallas County Sheriff's Office)

DALLAS, Texas – The Texas Supreme Court on Thursday issued an order granting the release of Dallas salon owner Shelley Luther, who was jailed for opening her salon in defiance of Governor Greg Abbott’s executive order banning the opening of salons. Abbott on Thursday modified the order to remove confinement as a punishment.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who also called for Luther’s release, commended the Texas Supreme Court for issuing the order.

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“The Texas Supreme Court correctly addressed Ms. Luther’s excessive punishment and unnecessary jailing. No Texan should face imprisonment for peacefully resisting an order that temporarily closed a lawful business and drastically limited their ability to provide for their family through no fault of their own,” Paxton said. “Texans must all work together to overcome this crisis, and ensuring freedom from excessive punishment is critical.”

During a court hearing Tuesday, Luther was given an option by District Judge Eric Moyé to apologize and promise not to reopen Salon A la Mode and he would “consider levying only a fine,” the Dallas Morning News reported. Luther responded by saying, "feeding my kids is not selfish. If you think the law is more important than kids getting fed, then please go ahead with your decision, but I am not going to shut the salon.”

The judge ordered Luther to spend a week in jail.

It’s not known when Luther will be released.

About the Author

David Ibañez has been managing editor of KSAT.com since the website's launch in October 2000.

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