Courtroom Brawl: Victim’s Brother & Killer’s Brother Fistfight In Court
One can imagine the frustration on BOTH parties’ family….check out what happened in this Ohio courtroom according to NY Daily News
A courtroom brawl broke out in Cincinnati Monday as a man prepared to plead guilty to killing his girlfriend.
Leonard Lanier, 28, of Oakley, Ohio, accepted a plea deal that would send him to prison for 28 years instead of life. He admitted to fatally shooting Strawberry Edwards, 21, the mother of his baby boy, in the head with a handgun on Feb. 21, 2013, at her apartment, authorities said.
Right before Lanier could plead guilty, his brother, Lucian Lanier, and the victim’s brother, Jason Edwards, lunged at each other and started to fight, reported local station WKRC. Several officers suffered minor injuries while attempting to break up the scuffle. One deputy’s finger was reportedly broken.
Lanier “launched past me to attack the (victim’s) family member,” said Assistant Prosecutor Anne Flanagan, whose glasses were broken, according to Cincinnati.com. “He just ran past me and had just launched himself.” Both men were immediately brought before the judge who held them in contempt of court. Lucien Lanier was charged with assaulting a police officer and sentenced to 30 days in jail. Jason Edwards got five.
Afterward, Leonard Lanier was finally able to plead guilty to the reduced charge of involuntary manslaughter. He was originally charged with murder and other charges that could have resulted in life in prison without the change of parole.
WCPO reported that Edwards was three months pregnant when she was murdered. Lanier had been trying to enter Edwards’ back door when they started fighting, her brother Ruebenn Knox told the station.
“I guess it got heated and it got physical,” he said, “and I guess, I don’t know, through anger, jealousy, whatever it was, I guess he pulled a gun and shot her.”
Source: NY Daily News