The moment a defendant sucker-punched his own lawyer in the face during a courtroom attack has been caught on camera.
Public defence attorney, Vladimir Gagic, was representing Lamont Payne, who has a criminal history of assaults and disobeying orders, according to local reports.
Payne was facing a trial for allegedly assaulting a corrections officer when he lashed out at the attorney assigned to his case, in the Arizona courtroom in the US.
"I've been doing this for over 20 years now, and never once did it cross my mind, not even an iota of concern there that something like this could happen to me," Mr Gagic said, as reported by ABC Arizona.
The video appears to show Mr Gagic being distracted the moment Payne suddenly punched him in the face.
The lawyer reportedly suffered a nose bleed.
"The first thing, literally the first thing I know is, 'oh it's salty.' I could literally taste his knuckles, then I got up and checked my teeth," Mr Gagic said in the article.
Court documents state Payne will no longer be allowed to attend court hearings in person and is now required to appear by video link, according to the ABC.
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