Man Arrested For Shouting He Had a Bomb in L.A. Courtroom

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A 43 year-old man was arrested Friday after standing up in a downtown Los Angeles courtroom and shouting that he had a bomb.

John Edward Watson, an audience member in Department 32 of the Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center, was immediately detained by the bailiff, according to a news release from the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department.

The courtroom and several floors were evacuated as arson and explosives teams responded, Sheriff’s Deputy Nicole Nishida said.

An unattended box left behind on a courtroom bench by Watson was found to contain a cell phone, the release stated.

The “all clear” was given by officials by 11:20 a.m.

Watson, of North Hollywood, was arrested for making a false report of a bomb and criminal threats.  He was being held on $50,000 bail.

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