Soooo a fight broke out in the courtroom Monday morning. I didn't actually *see* the fight. I was in an adjacent, closet-sized witness room meeting with my client. I could hear most of what happened though. It started out with angry, belligerent shouts from a man inside the courtroom. This was followed by several loud thuds on the floor, like bodies were hitting the ground. After this was a pained scream from the belligerent man. All of this I heard while crouched on the ground under a table beside my client because we didn't know what was going on. We just sure as heck knew we didn't want any part of it.
The noises continued into the hallway. I heard several pairs of shoes shuffling in the hallway, along with the belligerent man yelling "YOU CAN CALL MY MOM! YOU CAN CALL MY DAD!" This continued for several minutes. After the sounds died down, I unlocked and opened the door and peeked my head out.
I finally walked into the courtroom, and it was as if nothing had happened. So, of course, I had to ask what had happened. Based on eye-witness reports, this is what I can gather:
A defendant got mad at a bailiff who asked the defendant to take his hat off. The defendant was not pleased. The defendant did not take off his hat. The bailiff told him to take it off again. The defendant then decided he wanted to punch the bailiff.
The other bailiff tried to intervene, but the defendant knocked both bailiffs on the ground. One of the attorneys in the courtroom decided to help the bailiffs in case the defendant lunged for a gun. However, defendant decided he was just going to mosey on out of the courtroom. Enter taser. Or stun gun. I'm not exactly sure. All I know is that the dude wound up on the ground.
This moved into the hallway, and bailiffs from all 'round the courthouse came to help the cause. Belligerent man wasn't having any of that. He yelled a lot. I haven't quite figured out why he wanted everyone to call his parents. But he wanted everyone to call them, darn it.
I told a few of my friends about what happened. One asked me if the guy was held in contempt. I think contempt will wind up being the least of his problems.
And that was my morning in family court.