Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Stanford Blake, who took over briefly for Emas when the latter was appointed to the appeals court, called the marriage “kind of bizarre” when he learned about the wedding.
“And you gave him permission to be married?” Blake asked, according to a transcript of the hearing 12 days after the wedding.
“Well, I think that permission was his. I don’t how to answer the question,” Rotta replied cryptically.
An incredulous Blake replied: “In other words, a 16-year-old can decide, in today’s times, they can just go and get married and they don’t have to get permission of the parents?”
Rotta finally admitted he signed the consent.
“Is he on his honeymoon?” Blake asked Rotta.
“[He] is with me right now. He’s having breakfast,” Rotta replied. “His wife is in Miami.”
“Okay. Gee, it’s a shame they got married so quickly and had to be apart,” Blake deadpanned.
In a May contempt of court hearing, Rotta’s lawyers argued that the boarding school had already decided against admitting the teen because of the ongoing divorce litigation. The school, lawyers argued, was never even aware that the boy had gotten married.
Judge Schlesinger, who had taken over the case by this time, agreed that Rotta convinced the school to reject his son. But, had he not done so, the judge decided, Rotta likely would have used the marriage ‘trump card’ to keep his son from enrolling in the academy.
The boarding school does not accept married students.
Still, Schlesinger said, none of that excuses the father’s “contumacious” conduct.
He wrote in his final order: “It is hard for this court to imagine a bolder, more egregious example of indirect criminal contempt.”