Family describes mental health struggles of man who attacked Las Vegas judge

Family describes mental health struggles of man who attacked Las Vegas judge

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Deobra Redden, 30, charged in new case related to attack

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — When Karen Springer witnessed her son run and lunge at a Clark County judge, she kept saying one thing again and again: “Please don’t kill him.”

The family of Deobra Redden, 30, appeared in court Monday for his sentencing on a charge of attempted battery with substantial bodily harm, a sentencing that was interrupted Wednesday.

Outside the courtroom, Redden’s foster mother Springer said she was shocked when her son attacked Judge Mary Kay Holthus and that she does not condone what her son did.

“Oh my god, I went into a state of shock,” Springer said. “I mean it was heartbreaking really to see him and, like I said, at the end of the day it’s about his mental state.”

Deobra Redden appears with several family members. (Karen Springer)

Springer explained her son was just getting his life back on track and he had been making phone calls to representatives of the Teamsters union about a job he had accepted.

“He just got out, got an apartment, [he] did everything right,” she said. “In his mind, he didn’t think he was going back.”

LaDonna Daniels, Deobra’s sister, said the family was expecting a more lenient sentence for the initial charge heard Wednesday. Daniels said her brother’s mental condition had not been taken into consideration before his appearance.

“He tried to speak for himself,” Daniels said “I just think that he shouldn’t have been allowed to take the stand or speak by himself because of his condition.”

Redden’s family said they believe his bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and exposure to cocaine in his system when he was born were contributing factors to his reaction in court that led to him attacking the judge in the courtroom.

“I mean when we struggle from a mental illness, it’s a chemical imbalance, just as most addicts have chemical imbalances,” Daniels said.

Springer said that she has spoken to her son over the phone since Wednesday and that he is now taking his medication.

Redden faced new charges for what happened in court in a completely new case, which he was due to return to court for Tuesday. Redden faced 13 charges, including a new charge of attempted murder, which appeared in his court docket Monday.

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