With Christmas almost here, I thought this story would be amuzing

From Jack Fuqua’s Law Jokes:

Christmas in the Courthouse
A supposedly true story…

In a local county courthouse the Clerk of Court hated fake Christmas trees, so he always put up a real tree in the Clerk’s office every year. One year the Fire Marshal happened to do a building inspection of the courthouse just before Christmas, while the Clerk was out to lunch, and noticed the tree. In the belief that the tree represented a fire hazard, he proceeded to write a citation for a violation of the fire code, which prohibited “live” trees in a public building, and gave it to the Clerk’s assistant.

When the Clerk returned from lunch and was given the citation, he hit the roof. Determined that no Fire Marshal was going to spoil his Christmas, he decided to fight the citation. So he went to the morgue in the adjoining police station, and asked the Coroner for his help. The Coroner came over and put a toe tag on the tree, listing the cause of death as “Being cut off at ground level”.

The Clerk called the Fire Marshal back to re-inspect, and showed him the toe tag on the tree. He told him that when the Coroner pronounces something “dead”, it is *legally* dead, and therefore the citation for having a “live” tree was obviously in error, and wasn’t worth the paper it was written on.

The Fire Marshal thought about it, and came to the realization that, since he would have to pursue the fire code violation in that very courtroom, this was probably one argument he wasn’t going to win. So he let them have their tree.