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Angry defendant throws chair, injures 2 in Los Angeles courtroom

A man on trial for murder allegedly threw a chair at an LAPD officer and a deputy district attorney in court on Wednesday.
January 29, 2014 12:00:00 AM PST
A man on trial for murder got violent in a downtown Los Angeles courtroom on Wednesday and allegedly threw a chair at a police officer and a deputy district attorney.

The incident happened around 10:30 a.m. in Judge Ronald Rose's courtroom on the 15th floor of the Criminal Courts Building. Proceedings were just about to get underway in the trial of Jesus Mendez, who is charged with murder and robbery.

According to authorities, a homicide detective with the Los Angeles Police Department was hit in the head, and Deputy District Attorney Hilary Williams was hit on the shoulder. Williams is expected to be OK. The detective, who has not been identified, was taken to a hospital, where she was listed in good condition.

Officials said the defendant was being led into the courtroom by the bailiff and was not shackled when the attack happened.

"Once the defendant was brought out from the lockup area, he was instructed to sit down at the defendant's table. Instead of sitting down, he grabbed the chair, threw it," said Lt. Eddie Hernandez with the LAPD.

The defendant was subdued by the bailiff and other officers. The jury was not present when the chair-throwing incident occurred. But family members of the victim in the murder case were in the courtroom and witnessed the attack.


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