Published: Wed, March 14, 2018
Global | By Marsha Munoz

Gang member shot dead in court after he rushes witness stand

Gang member shot dead in court after he rushes witness stand

Dramatic footage from a fatal courtroom shooting in Salt Lake City, Utah was released by a federal judge on Monday.

Siale Angilau, a member of the Tongan Crips gang, was filmed grabbing a pen or pencil before running towards the witness, another gang member.

Tenifa had been on the witness stand for 22 ½ minutes when the video shows Angilau standing up from his seat beside his defense attorney, picking up a pen from the defense table and charging.

The judge wrote in a statement: "The video completely contradicts the plaintiffs" argument that Angilau stopped posing a danger within less than one second of launching himself over the witness stand while making a stabbing motion with a pen in his hand'. The other gang member was shackled, but managed to escape to the corner of the room as Angilau leaped into the witness box and fell to the floor.

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'His attack was stopped by the shots that Jane Doe rapidly fired, in less than one and one-half seconds'.

In the clip, an officer can be heard yelling at Angilau: 'Drop the pen, drop the pen out of your hand'.

Siale Angilau, 25, is seen charging towards the stand inside a Utah federal courthouse before a U.S. marshal fires four rounds at close range.

The unidentified United States marshal was cleared of any wrongdoing by the Federal Bureau of Investigation shortly after the shooting and a review board found the use of force was within agency policy. Faces of the marshal and jurors are blurred to obscure their identities.

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However Angilau's family believes a jury should see the video to decide if the marshal used appropriate force, their lawyer Robert Sykes told Deseret News.

'There was no necessity to use force'.

Sykes said he's glad the video was made public, but the Angilau family wants justice.

The video was released after a media coalition, including The Associated Press, argued for its release as an important record in a police use-of-force case, according to the AP. A wrongful death lawsuit by Angilau's family was dismissed on the same day.

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