Update: Courtroom melee after man found guilty leads to new charges

Author:
Updated:
Original:

Chaos erupted in a Ramsey County courtroom Tuesday afternoon after two defendants were found guilty of sex trafficking charges – and by the following afternoon, one of the defendants faced new assault charges after authorities say he spit on an attorney.

The Ramsey County Attorney's Office details the incident in a complaint released Wednesday afternoon.

According to the complaint:

As soon as the guilty verdicts against Johnathan Bernard Edwards and the other defendant were read, Edwards directed an expletive toward the prosecuting attorney, "gathered saliva in his mouth," and spat at her.

The saliva struck the attorney in the head, face and neck.

Edwards was immediately tackled on top of a table by deputies.

Edwards is now charged with fourth-degree assault, intentionally transferring bodily fluids onto a prosecuting attorney.

The other defendant, Kauser Mohamoud Yusuf, who is nine months pregnant, collapsed to the ground and "began to wail," the charges say.

Details from the courtroom

Elizabeth Mohr of the Pioneer Press was the only reporter in the courtroom at the time, and she described the situation as "absolute mayhem." Click here to read her story.

Some of the spectators in the gallery began shouting obscenities at the jury and calling the verdict racist, Mohr reports. The two defendants are black.

About a dozen deputies drew their stun guns and tried to control the crowd, while court employees were escorted into the judge's chambers.

The two defendants were handcuffed and taken out of the courtroom. The spectators were ushered out of the courtroom, and according to Mohr, another scuffle erupted in the hallway after one of them shoved a sheriff's deputy.

Edwards, 25, and Yusuf, 22, were found guilty of engaging in sex trafficking a 15-year-old girl. Prosecutors said the two posted lewd photos of the girl on the classified site Backpage.com and arranged for men to have sex with her, MPR News reports.

A sentencing hearing for Edwards and Yusuf is scheduled for Feb. 27. They each face up to 20 years in prison and $50,000 in fines.

Next Up

police lights

Suspect leads police on 26-mile pursuit in Meeker County

When the suspect stopped, he tried to get out of his car with a shotgun in hand.

Screen Shot 2020-11-30 at 7.41.02 AM

Human remains found at Albert Lea building where 3 people where shot

Authorities say the human remains are not related to the shooting.

DirecTV

DirecTV subscribers could lose KARE 11 on Tuesday

A new contract needs to be agreed upon by 6 p.m. Tuesday.

prison, Rush City cell block

Inmate from Rush City prison dies after COVID-19 diagnosis

The man is the fifth incarcerated person in Minnesota to die from COVID-19.

ambulance

Belle Plaine man dies after duck boat capsizes on lake

One man was found sitting on the overturned boat while another man was in the water.

Screen Shot 2020-11-29 at 4.59.51 PM

Watch: Adam Thielen watches end of Vikings/Panthers just like all of us

The Vikings receiver looked like a true fan on Sunday afternoon.

Chad Beebe

Chad Beebe's roller-coaster fourth-quarter keeps Vikings playoff hopes alive

A muffed punt and a game-winning touchdown helped defeat the Panthers on Sunday afternoon.

127266986_2766399800267634_3587849554502438415_n

West-central MN cops warn kids to stay off ice, or 'Santa won't come'

This comes amid repeated ice warnings across the state.

covid-19, coronavirus, PPE

Nov. 29 COVID-19 update: 57 deaths, nearly 9,000 more cases

Nearly 100,000 tests were included in Sunday's report.

jim ramstad

Watch former Rep. Jim Ramstad's memorial service online

The ceremony will be live-streamed for the public on Sunday.

EDL1LeKXsAEeH32

How high can Rashod Bateman go in the 2021 NFL Draft?

The Gophers star receiver has plenty of praise heading into next April.

Related