PUBLISHED: 13:09 EST, 2 August 2012 | UPDATED: 13:09 EST, 2 August 2012
Defendant: Rashad Reddick, charged with three murders, reportedly assaulted his attorney on Wednesday during a competency hearing
A man facing capital murder charges in the death of three family members attacked and repeatedly punched his attorney in the face during a court hearing.
About 15 minutes into a hearing to establish Virginia man Rashad Riddick’s mental competency to stand trial yesterday, he began violently and repeatedly punching his attorney, Joseph Flood, in the face for no apparent reason.
Riddick’s attorneys had asked that his hands and feet be unrestrained for the hearing.
The Culpeper Star-Exponentreports that court security immediately tackled Riddick to the ground and all of them toppled over a table, breaking two of its legs.
As security wrestled with Riddick, Mr Flood screamed at security not to hurt his client, despite the evident bruises already forming on his face from the attack.
No one was seriously injured, though the bruises were evident on Flood’s face following a brief recess.
Riddick faces capital murder charges, and the possible death penalty in the February 11, 2011, shooting deaths of his uncle James Jackson, 55, his wife Karen Lee Jackson, 53 and her daughter Chante Latrice Davis, 26.
The murder occurred in a farmhouse off of U.S. 15.
Attacked: Attorney Joseph Flood, of Fairfax, called out to security not to hurt his client even after being pummeled in the face in court
From the start of the hearing, which was called to discern if Riddick was mentally competent to stand trial, he was disruptive and visibly agitated, screaming out when the judge spoke.
Friends and family members of the victims were in the public seating area and were clearly traumatized by the incident.
According to the Star Exponet, Chante Davis’s sister cried out: ‘Where is my mom at? Where is my dad at? Where is my sister at?
‘I can only see them at the grave site. My family will never see justice.’
Riddick faces three counts of capital murder, use of a firearm in commission of a felony, possession of a sawed-off shotgun in commission of a felony and grand larceny in the murders of James and Karen Jackson and Chante Davis.
The victims were found dead at the Jackson’s home.
An apparent motive in the alleged triple murder was revenge for being previously turned into police by his relatives for stealing a car.