Court Reporter Tackles Razor-Wielding Defendent

I’m working on some interesting posts, but since it’s Saturday (and unbelievably beautiful here in Southern Cal) I wanted to share a quick, amusing story courtesy of Slate. Courage in action: don’t mess with stenographers.

The "legal tabloid" abovethelaw.com named Ron Tolkin "Court Reporter of the Day" last month after the 61-year-old Brooklyn stenographer was called upon to wrestle a rampaging criminal to the ground in open court. Tolkin jumped on defendant Victor Wright after the convicted drug felon started choking federal prosecutor Carolyn Pokorny, head of the Eastern District of New York narcotics division. The crazed Wright also tried, unsuccessfully, to slash Pokorny with a razor (see Page 6), but the weapon fell to the floor amid the tumult. As Tolkin subdued the assailant, with help from the defendant’s lawyer and two U.S. marshals, his tape recorder picked up the scuffle. Several days later, the conscientious court reporter produced a certified (Page 7) transcript of the unusual proceedings. Excerpts appear below and on the following six pages.

"I told him, ‘You want to try something, try it on me,’ " Tolkin explained to the New York Times. "Only I wasn’t that polite." Let the record show that Tolkin’s precise words, as quoted in the transcript, were: "Try it on me, man, I’ll kick you in the fuckin’ balls" (Page 3). Tolkin is also quoted in the transcript saying, "You cocksucker, get off of her. Get off of her. Get off of her. You cocksucker, get off of her" (Page 3) and, "Fuckin’ shit. Son-of-a-bitch" (Page 4). Tolkin offered the court an unnecessary but gentlemanly apology for the harsh language in his transcript, much of it his own. The trial was subsequently postponed.

2 Responses to Court Reporter Tackles Razor-Wielding Defendent

  1. Chris Yeh says:

    I hope the brave Mr. Tolkin wasn’t punished for his homophobic use of the term “cocksucker” to describe Pokorny’s assailant.

  2. Resveratrol says:

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