Man Dies by Apparent Suicide in North Dakota Courtroom After Hearing Verdict

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A man on trial died in an apparent suicide on Monday shortly after he was handed down a partial guilty verdict in a North Dakota courtroom, according to local reports.

Though the jury had left the courtroom in Fargo, several others were still present when the man cut his own throat with a sharp instrument possibly made of plastic, North Dakota U.S. Marshal Dallas Carlson said, the Associated Press reported.

"He did the self-harm after he heard the verdict and after the jury had left the courtroom," FBI spokesperson Kevin Smith, who did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment, told the outlet.

Smith said that the man had been acquitted on one charge and found guilty on another, and was about to be taken into custody when the incident occurred around 2 p.m.

A witness told local newspaper The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead that the man asked to be released until his sentencing, but had his request denied. He then allegedly asked to be released for 24 hours to tend to a childcare situation, but that request was denied, too.

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The witness said "the Marshals had wrestled him to the floor" after it became apparent that he was harming himself.

Among those still in the room when the incident occurred were U.S. District Judge Peter Welte and other courtroom staff, the AP reported. Carlson told the outlet that security officers and deputy marshals attempted life-saving measures, but were unsuccessful.

"I can't remember the last time an event like this happened where somebody was able to smuggle in some contraband into a federal courtroom and die of a self-inflicted wound," Smith told the Forum. "Very, very, very odd. Very unusual. We will take our time to get to the bottom of it."

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Though authorities have not identified the man, the Forum reported that the only trial scheduled in the federal court was for a man charged from an incident in April 2020 in which he allegedly drove a Jeep toward seven children at "excessive speeds" and nearly hit them, and also assaulted someone with a handgun.

He reportedly faced charges of assault with a deadly weapon, reckless endangerment, terrorizing and using a firearm in a violent felony.

Judge Welte did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to