May 23 2019
NEWPORT, Oregon — A man reached and tried to grab a police officer's gun in a Newport courtroom this week. One official stated that perhaps a year-old federal appeals decision contributed to the near-disaster.
A judge had denied a request by deputies to restrain 27-year-old Scott Lemmon in court Wednesday.
In a scuffle caught on courtroom video, a man identified by authorities as Lemmon stood up and lunged for a gun worn by a Newport police officer who was sitting at a lawyer's table nearby.
The officer turned away and a courthouse deputy tackled Lemmon to the floor.
Authorities say this is the first case of a Lincoln County defendant grabbing for a gun since the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in 2017 to allow judges to decide if defendants are restrained when escorted into the courtroom.