It isn’t often that a judge is attacked while presiding over a court proceeding. If such attacks do occur, there’s rarely any video footage — until now.

Melissa Hardwick was agitated even before she lunged for judge Jennifer Edward’s neck during a juvenile court hearing on Wednesday (July 13). Mrs. Hardwick’s ex-husband had dragged her into court for violating a previous court order. Despite the judge’s warning that she would be placed in contempt of court, Hardwick continued her ranting.

So judge Edwards sentenced Hardwick to 10 days in jail — and with a flick of her wrist, she dismissed Hardwick, telling her “Go now.” That’s when the upset mother sprang into action, leaping across the startled judge’s bench at her.

“I’ve worked here for 31/2 years and this is the first time anything that serious has ever happened,” said Wayne County security officer Adam Dodson, who got to Hartwick first and wrestled her to the floor.

Hardwick ended up with cuts and scratches on her face, and Dodson got a few pats on his back.

“I had to use the right amount of physical force to stop her actions,” he said. “We’re quite a bit prepared for next time.”

[Sandra Rose]

Be the first to receive breaking news alerts and more stories like this by subscribing to our mailing list.