An Oakland Park man who threatened to shoot himself in the Broward County courthouse last January drank what he said was poison and collapsed in a courtroom in the same building Thursday morning, just moments after being found guilty.
Marin Stroia was found guilty on charges of armed trespass and reckless display of a weapon for the January 14, 2011 incident. Distraught over a child custody case, he had threatened to kill himself in the ground floor lobby of the courthouse, sending the building into lockdown until he was talked down by Judge Joel T. Lazarus.
Thursday morning, he sent the court into chaos again. Following the reading of the guilty verdict by Broward Judge David Haimes, Stroia reportedly opened an unlabeled bottle, drank the clear liquid contents, and informed a court official it was poison.
Though the South-Florida Sun-Sentinel reports Stroia then told a court deputy it wasn’t poison after all, he collapsed to the floor before he could be escorted from the room.
After the court was cleared and paramedics called, Stroia was seen being wheeled out on a stretcher with his eyes closed. Fort Lauderdale Fire-Rescue spokesman Matt Little confirmed to HuffPost Miami first responders transported a “an advanced life support patient” to Broward General Hospital.
“At the beginning he seemed ok…I did not expect this,” his attorney Maury Halperin told NBCMiami. “I think it’s a fair guess to say he was distraught.”
The January 2011 incident exposed a serious security flaw at the courthouse, which beefed up its safety procedures after Stroia bypassed security with a pistol by entering the courthouse through an exit door. He then walked to the ground floor lobby, put the gun to his chin, and brought the building to a stop. Judge Lazarus talked with Stroia for about 15 minutes before convincing him to end the situation.
“He was ranting and raving about his divorce situation, but not incoherently,” Lazarus told NBCMiami at the time. “He needed to vent, he needed someone to listen to his problems