Man Drinks “Poison” in Courtroom, Collapses After Guilty Verdict

Man convicted of bringing gun to courthouse drinks liquid in courtroom

A man who was found guilty Thursday of bringing a gun to the Broward County courthouse and threatening to kill himself caused another bizarre scene in the courthouse when he drank liquid he said was poison out of a bottle and collapsed after the verdict was read.

Marin Stroia, 60, was found guilty of armed trespass and reckless display of a weapon in the Jan. 14, 2011 incident at the courthouse at 201 Southeast 6th Street in Fort Lauderdale.

Shortly after the verdict was read, Stroia pulled out an aspirin bottle and drank the liquid, telling a courtroom official it was poison.

As Stroia was being escorted to have his fingerprints taken, he collapsed and had to be taken from the courtroom on a stretcher by paramedics.

Stroia's attorney, Maury Halperin, said Stroia was taken to the hospital, but said he didn't know his condition.

"At the beginning he seemed OK...I did not expect this," Halperin said. "I think it's a fair guess to say he was distraught."

The incident came a year and a month after an armed Stroia barged into the courthouse through an exit door and threatened to kill himself.

Distraught over his divorce proceedings, Stroia sat down in the courthouse lobby and pointed the gun at his chest, police said.

Stroia had to be talked out of shooting himself by retired Judge Joel Lazarus, who spoke with Stroia for 15 minutes before he was taken into custody.

Lazarus later said Stroia just "needed to vent" and wanted someone to listen to his problems.

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