FRESNO – A man in the midst of a trial for the murder of a Reedley man attacked one of his co-defendants during a court appearance and now faces charges of attempted murder.
The incident happened on Thursday morning at Fresno’s main courthouse at Fresno and Van Ness streets. Juan Hernandez, 23, and two other defendants were in court on murder charges. Around 11 a.m., the judge and attorneys left the room for a meeting in the judge’s chambers. Despite being seated and shackled at the counsel table, Hernandez was able to attack one of his co-defendants, 27-year-old Ramanjit Hundal, with a small razor blade, according to the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department.
During the incident, approximately 90 prospective jurors were in the courtroom and witnessed the event. The three deputies on duty were able to intervene and subdue Hernandez. They moved Hundal out of the room and later transported him to Community Regional Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening stab wounds.
Authorities found the weapon lying on the counsel table. The sheriff’s department is trying to determine how Hernandez was able to get the razor blade into the courtroom, said Chris Curtice, spokesperson for the department.
After the incident, Hernandez was transported back to the jail and charged with attempted murder. The jurors were moved to another courtroom where they were interviewed by detectives.
The third co-defendant was not involved or injured in the incident. He was transported back to jail.
The three men were in court on charges that they shot and killed 33-year-old Juan Negrete of Reedley in September of 2010.
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