Fight Breaks Out at Courthouse Following Arraignment

Fight Breaks Out at Courthouse Following Arraignment

( – A fistfight broke out in a Massachusetts courtroom when a dead woman’s family came face-to-face with relatives of the man accused of killing her. Ryan Sweatt, charged with murdering 26-year-old Destini Decoff in a road rage incident, appeared in Framingham District Court for his arraignment. While outside the courtroom, his family traded insults with Decoff’s relatives. The two groups briefly came to blows before police stepped in and pulled them apart.

There were no arrests, but one of Decoff’s aunts appeared to sustain injury to her neck, and CCTV images show her wiping blood away. Dawn Anderson vowed that her niece would get justice and described Sweatt’s family as “sick.”

The incident that caused Ms. Decoff’s death occurred in April when she had an altercation with Sweatt on Route 85 near Milford, Massachusetts. After allegedly exchanging angry words from their cars, both pulled over, and 36-year-old Sweatt alleges that passengers in Decoff’s car threatened him with a knife, so he fled the scene.

Prosecutors say that Mr. Sweatt then took a swift turn, sped back in Decoff’s direction, and struck her. She died days later from a brain bleed and collapsed lungs. Witnesses said she was hit with such force that she flew through the air.

When police caught up with the suspect, he insisted that Decoff and her friends were trying to kill him and that he hit the victim by accident while attempting to get away.

Mr. Sweatt’s attorneys described him as a peaceful person with no criminal record and a stable history, including long-term employment.

When he first appeared in court in April, Sweatt faced charges of assault and battery with a deadly weapon and causing serious bodily injury, but these were later upgraded to murder. CCTV from a nearby bar provided evidence against the defendant and appeared to show him turning his vehicle twice and racing toward Decoff and her friends. The blows threw the victim as high as 75 feet in the air. Mr. Sweatt is held without bond.

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