Jorge Rodriguez-Chomat (June 28, 1945 – August 19, 2017) was a Cuban-American politician and judge. He was a one-term member of the Florida House of Representatives representing a district in West Miami for the Republican Party from 1994 until his defeat in 1998. He served as a Judge of the Criminal and Family Divisions of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit Court of Florida from 2011 until his retirement in 2017.
Early life and education
Rodriguez-Chomat was born in Havana and was active in the Cuban-American lobby. He attended high school briefly, but dropped out to support his family. He was educated at St. Thomas University and served in the U.S. Army Reserve. Rodriguez-Chomat went on to work as an accountant, an IRS agent and a tax lawyer before winning office as a lawmaker and later serving as a judge.
In 2013, Rodriguez-Chomat was the subject of a viral video after a teenage girl arrested on drugs charges giggled throughout her bond hearing and flippantly told Rodriguez-Chomat "adios" as she walked off. He responded by calling her back and doubling her bond amount. After the girl, Penelope Soto, angrily replied by saying "F*** you", and gave him the middle finger, he sentenced her to 30 days imprisonment for contempt of court, bidding her "adios". After she apologized, he withdrew the contempt citations and urged her to seek drug counselling.
- Ovalle, David (20 August 2017). "Jorge Rodriguez-Chomat, a Miami judge who 'only wanted to do good', dies at 72". http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/obituaries/article168262817.html.
- "Penelope Soto Apologizes To Judge For Flipping Him The Bird In Court". Huffington Post. Oath Inc.. February 8, 2013. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/08/penelope-soto-apologizes-judge-middle-finger_n_2647527.html.
- Morejon, Liane; Torres, Andrea (August 20, 2017). "Judge Jorge Rodriguez-Chomat dies at 72". Local 10. Berkshire Hathaway Company. https://www.local10.com/news/florida/miami-dade/judge-jorge-rodriguez-chomat-dies-at-72.