Man arrested after ruckus with sheriffs officers at court

Rosie Mullaley rmullaley@thetelegram.com
Published on February 27, 2012
Sheriff’s officers take down Tom Michael Grace in the main hallway of provincial court in St. John’s this morning. — Photo by Rosie Gillingham/The Telegram

A man who was taken down by sheriff’s officers at provincial court in St. John’s this morning after he refused to move behind security barriers is facing criminal charges.

Tom Michael Grace was arrested following an incident that happened in the main hallway outside Courtroom No. 7.

Sheriff’s officers had secured the area with retractable security tape — the routine when reporters are there — as Grace’s brother, Harold Douglas Grace, was to be escorted out from the courtroom and back to the holding cells.

Tom Grace was standing in the area where his brother was to be led out and was asked by a sheriff’s officer to move behind the tape.

He refused.

“I’m not moving,” he said to the officer. “I’m allowed to be here.”

The officer said he wasn’t permitted to stand there and asked him again to move, but Grace again refused.

That’s when the officer forcibly moved the man, pushing him from the area.

Grace struggled, prompting a second nearby sheriff’s officer to help restrain him.

Another three officers ran from the holding cells and forced Grace to the floor.

He was handcuffed and taken to the holding cells.

RNC officers arrived shortly after and charged Grace with uttering threats to sheriff’s officers and resisting arrest.

He was later released and will appear in court at a later date, which has yet to be scheduled.

Meanwhile, Harold Douglas Grace — who was arrested Sunday morning after he allegedly hit a parked car — is charged with several Highway Traffic violations and owes more than $30,000 in unpaid traffic tickets.

He was remanded into custody and is due back in court Tuesday.