By David Boroff: A Michigan sex offender was charged with terrorism and attempted murder on Thursday after he was caught on video going after a prosecutor with a shank in court last month.
Joshua Harding, on trial for sexually assaulting a 10-year-old girl in a cemetery, had the metal shank hidden in his sleeve in the Lansing-area courtroom.
The video from Aug. 2 shows prosecutor Jonathan Roth getting out of the way just in time as a police detective tackles Harding.
Harding, a 35-year-old registered sex offender, was sentenced Wednesday to 19 to 38 years in prison for the sexually assault. He watched his sentencing from a holding cell, according to the Lansing State Journal.
“The danger he presents, in particular to children in the community, deprives families of the ability to feel safe in having their children engaging in activities that kids should be able to do without having to have a guard stand watch over them at all times,” Ingham County Circuit Court Judge James Jamo said, according to the newspaper. “This impacts everyone. It does impact the community. That is not lost upon me.”
The attack on Roth was not mentioned during his sentencing, although prosecutors did ask for a 50-year prison term.
“He is a predator who cannot and will not be rehabilitated,” Roth said, according to the Lansing State Journal.
“So often at sentencing the court is asked to speculate about the future, to protect the community based on possibilities,” the prosecutor continued. “In this case we are not bringing to you a possibility, but a sure thing. When and if this man is released, he will reoffend. And he will do so with children.”