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Window-smashing suspect faces charges from outburst in court

Published April 05. 2013 05:04PM

Carl Stevens Jr., 33, currently housed in the Carbon County Correctional Facility, faces charges from an outburst on March 13 at District Judge Casimir Kosciolek's offices at 417 E. Ridge St., Lansford, while awaiting arraignment on charges stemming from a glass-smashing spree at the borough building earlier that day.

Charges of aggravated assault of a judge, institutional vandalism, obstruction of justice, resisting arrest, and two counts of persistent disorderly conduct were filed against Stevens on March 28 by Lansford Police Chief John Turcmanovich.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, here's what happened:

At about 5 p.m. March 13, as Stevens waited in Kosciolek's courtroom, he became unruly and combative.

Stevens, handcuffed in a restraining belt, was sitting at a desk in the courtroom, in front of the judicial bench. When he was given court papers before Kosciolek's entrance, Stevens allegedly pushed the papers off the desk and threw them onto the floor, where they remained.

Kosciolek entered the courtroom and began the arraignment. About 30 seconds later, Stevens suddenly jumped up from the desk and shouted to the judge, "I'm guilty! I admit I did it, and let's get it on!"

Stevens stepped toward the judicial bench, then picked up the desk he was standing in front of and threw it through the air. The desk bounced off the courtroom wall, smashing into numerous pieces.

Stevens then stood in front of the judicial bench as Kosciolek stood up.

Police officers Jeff Ohl, Timothy Wuttke, Sgt. Jack Soberick, and Turcmanovich surrounded Stevens, who began to struggle with all four officers as they tried to control him.

Stevens was finally subdued to the floor, and held down by police as he was recuffed and shackled more securely. Stevens was trying to swing and lash out at the officers with his hands, and kicking with his legs.

Kosciolek returned to his office and called the Carbon County dispatch center for more officers to respond and help control Stevens.

Soberick received a minor injury to his hand while attempting to recuff Stevens.

After Stevens was secured, Kosciolek quickly completed the arraignment, and Stevens was taken to Carbon County prison. Restitution for the damage he did to the courtroom and furniture is estimated at $606.

Stevens, who gave his address at the time as 48 Rhume St., Nesquehoning, had taken a tire iron to every window in the police station on the ground floor of the borough building at 1 E. Ridge St., and smashed the glass door and window in the first floor tax collector's office.

He is charged with attempt of criminal trespass, institutional vandalism, one count of felony terroristic threats, one count of misdemeanor terroristic threats, possession of an instrument of a crime, resisting arrest, two counts of persistent disorderly conduct, and public drunkenness.

Stevens remains jailed under $50,000 cash bail on those charges.

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