Report: Defendant in Vegas Attack on Judge Found to be Schizophrenic

Posted on: January 11, 2024, 08:34h.

Last updated on: January 11, 2024, 08:34h.

The Las Vegas man who jumped over a courtroom bench last week and attacked a judge suffers from emotional illness, a relative claimed.

Deobra Redden, Mary Kay Holthus
Deobra Redden, left, in a mask while appearing in court. He had attacked Judge Mary Kay Holthus, right. (Image: CNN)

Deobra Redden, 30, had not been taking his medication for schizophrenia when he leaped at Clark County District Court Judge Mary Kay Holthus on January 3, his relatives told local media.

Redden repeatedly uttered obscenities and slammed the judge’s head against the courtroom wall, assaulted her and pulled out her hair, according to NBC News. He also grabbed her by the throat, CNN reported.

Painful Injuries

The judge suffered painful injuries and was later taken to a local hospital for treatment. A courtroom marshal, Shane Brandon, suffered a dislocated shoulder and a cut on his face after struggling with Redden. He also required hospitalization.

A clerk for the judge, Michael Lasso, 27, who hurled punches at Redden, suffered cuts on his hand.

I was just in shock and I just reacted,” Lasso told ABC’s Good Morning America. “I don’t even want to think about what would have happened if I wasn’t there.”

When Redden lashed out, Holthus had just told him he would be heading to prison for a 2023 attempted battery with substantial harm charge. He expected to be placed on probation and not be sent back to prison.

Because of the attack, the judge didn’t complete Redden’s sentencing on January 3. But he returned to court on Monday.

That’s when Holthus sentenced him for between 19 and 48 months for the April 23, 2023 attack with a baseball bat.

I want to make it clear that I am not changing or modifying the sentence I was in the process of imposing last week before I was interrupted by the defendant’s actions,” Holthus said before announcing Monday’s sentence.

On Tuesday, Redden was charged with attempted murder for attacking Holthus. He also faces battery on a protected person, extortion by threat, and intimidating a public officer for the violent outburst in Clark County District Court.

Foster Mom Was Shocked

Redden’s foster mother, Karen Springer, told KVVU that last week’s outburst “shocked me just like it shocked everybody else.”

“I just think that his actions were not premeditated, it was triggered because he seemed to have been pleading for his freedom,” Ladonna Daniels, Redden’s sister, further told Las Vegas TV station KVVU.

I don’t think sending him to prison is going to deter anybody who suffers from a mental illness — they need to be surrounded by health care professionals,” Daniels added.

Last year, Redden was found competent to stand trial for the incident with the baseball bat, several months after he was ordered to undergo in-patient treatment at a state forensic psychiatric facility, according to Las Vegas TV station KLAS.

As of Thursday, Redden remains in custody at the Clark County Detention Center.

Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson added in a statement issued on Wednesday. “Thank God for the heroic efforts of those who came to her aid, especially her marshal and her law clerk. Without them, the situation would have been much worse, as this defendant exhibited extremely violent behavior, and I’m confident there will be consequences.”

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