A D.C. Superior Court judge yesterday found former D.C. City Councilman Douglas E. Moore guilty of contempt of court. Moore had failed to appear last month at a hearing scheduled to explain why he had not submitted to court-ordered psychiatric tests after biting a man in an argument.
Judge Milton D. Korman, who held Moore in contempt on Oct. 4 and issued a warrant for his arrest, testified before Judge Tim Murphy yesterday that Moore was contacted on the day of the day of the hearing but chose not to appear.
William Borders, Moore's attorney, told the court that his client could not appear because of pressing personal business.
Korman had ordered Moore in September to explain why he had not submitted to psychiatric tests. An order for him to do so was issued after Moore's conviction in 1976 for assault in connection with an incident in which he bit a tow-truck driver during an altercation near the District Building.
Six days after Korman issued the arrest warrant, Moore surrendered to federal marshals at his attorney's office.
Murphy ruled yesterday that Moore knowingly and willingly" violated Korman's order to appear.
"Your reason for failing to appear was not illness and was not a personal family emergency," Murphy said, "but it appears to have been of a commercial business nature." Moore explained to reporters that he was attending a business meeting in New York.
Murphy sentenced Moore either to pay a $500 fine, spend 10 days in jail or perform 50 hours of community service work. Moore was given a week to decide.