KEY POINTS

  • Salon À la Mode owner Shelley Luther was arrested for defying Gov. Greg Abbott's lockdown rules 
  • She was sentenced to seven days in jail and a $7,000 fine for her actions 
  • Luther shared a powerful statement with the sentencing judge in defense of her behavior

Salon À la Mode owner Shelley Luther shared some powerful words after being sentenced to jail for seven days for opening her salon during the Dallas, Texas, lockdown. 

Luther was charged with criminal and civil contempt Tuesday and ordered to pay $7,000 for defying the lockdown rules set by Gov. Greg Abbott. The order came by way of Judge Eric Moyé, who clarified she would be paying $3,500 plus an additional $500 for each day the salon remains open until Friday. The salon remains open. 

Despite being warned by a cease-and-desist letter sent from Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins, Luther continued to operate her salon. She ripped up the letter in public in solidarity with the Open Texas movement instead and continued to defy the request that she close her salon. However, when she appeared in court, observing proper social distancing measures, she had a powerful statement behind her disobedience. 

"If you would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge that your own actions were selfish, putting your own interest ahead of those in the community in which you live," Judge Moyé had said, as he offered Luther a chance to avoid jail time and considered giving her only a fine. But Luther declined to apologize and instead offered a statement to Judge Moyé. 

"I have much respect for this court and laws. I have never been in this position before and it’s not someplace that I want to be," said Luther. "But I have to disagree with you sir, when you say that I’m selfish because feeding my kids — is not selfish. I have hair stylists that are going hungry because they’d rather feed their kids. So sir, 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.”

Since Luther's court appearance, her attorney Warren Norred has filed an appeal. There has been no further update on the situation, while the salon remains open. Meanwhile, Luther will be carrying out her sentence as salons are allowed to open May 8.

Hair salons have been allowed to reopen in Germany Hair salons have been allowed to reopen in Germany Photo: AFP / THOMAS KIENZLE