A Las Vegas judge was attacked on the floor of the court last week by a defendant just after learning of her incarceration.
He was forced to appear with a mask, Hanibal Lecter style: The defendant who attacked a Las Vegas judge in the plenary session last week found that judge blocked by chains on Monday from settling the case had been brought to court.
Debora Redden emerged from anonymity Wednesday by attacking Judge Mary Kay Holtus. He jumped over his platform when he realized she was about to send him to prison for assault, before he was painfully restrained by security officers and court staff.
The incident was filmed and quickly spread on social media.
Accompanied by six police officers
After several days in the cell, the 30-year-old man was finally sentenced to a prison sentence of up to four years in a closely monitored hearing on Monday.
The defendant returned to the bar accompanied by six police officers. He wore a mask that covered the lower half of his face to prevent him from biting, a transparent hood to prevent possible spitting, and orange bondage sleeves that blocked his hands.
“I want to make it clear that I am not changing or modifying the sentence I planned to impose last week,” the judge said, insisting on her impartiality even after she was slightly injured in the scuffle, according to the Las Vegas Review diary.
The judge did not require hospitalization. However, a court guard was taken to hospital with minor injuries.
Brought to court “by any means necessary.”
Debora Redden, who has been convicted of domestic violence in the past, faces a separate trial for her attack on the judge. He was due to answer for that attack on Thursday but refused to leave his cell.
For Monday's hearing, the court ordered him to be tried “by any means necessary,” according to local media.
Attacks on judges in the middle of the courtroom are rare in the United States. On the other hand, threats against judges have increased in recent years.
In 2022, the US Marshals Service, the police force responsible for protecting federal judges, recorded 1,362 cases of threats or potential threats against them, compared to 926 in 2015.
Threats against judges peaked in 2021, with 4,511 recorded incidents of this type.