Criminal Justice

A judge in Eaton County, Michigan, said Friday there is “no way” she would use her contempt power to punish a father who charged at former sports doctor Larry Nassar in court during statements by sexual assault victims.

The man, Randall Margraves, was blocked by Nassar lawyer Matthew Newburg and tackled by deputies, report the Associated Press, USA Today, the Detroit News and National Public Radio.

Margraves asked Judge Janice Cunningham if he could have “five minutes in a locked room with this demon.” The judge said no, and Margraves then asked for “one minute” with Nassar. The judge refused once more, and at that point Margraves lunged at Nassar.

As deputies led Margraves out of the courtroom, Assistant Attorney General Angela Povilaitis addressed the gallery. “No one can behave like this,” she said. “I want to make sure it’s crystal clear.”

When Margraves was brought back before Cunningham, the judge told him that his conduct was not acceptable and she “cannot tolerate or condone vigilantism.” But she declined to punish him for contempt.

“There is no way that this court is going to issue any type of punishment given the circumstances of this case,” she said.

The sheriff’s office is investigating the incident and will send a report to the local prosecutor.

Nassar had been accused of molesting girls, including Olympic gymnasts, while providing medical treatments for USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University.

Nassar was in the Eaton County courtroom for his third sentencing, this time on three sexual assault charges. He was previously sentenced to 40 to 175 years in prison in Ingham County, Michigan, for sexually abusing seven girls. He was also sentenced to 60 years in prison in a federal child pornography case.