Weapons seized in Eastern Division Court

BELLAIRE – When a defendant out on bond came to Eastern Division Court with deadly weapons, court officials called the police.

Bellaire and Shadyside officers responded and reportedly saw 68-year old Ron Asher, also known as Rahaan Obatiaye Cetawayo, carrying a walking stick.

Attached to the walking stick were a set of brass knuckles and a filet knife.

“The knife was about 13 inches long,” said Bellaire Police Chief Mike Kovalyk. “And he was seated at the defense table within the courtroom. Unfortunately, there wasn’t any security there to deal with the situation.”

The brass knuckles and knife were collected by police.

They say Asher was informed that he can’t bring that sort of thing into a courtroom.

The incident reminds Chief Kovalyk of what he advised officials several years ago when they were first considering building the combined Northern and Eastern Division Courts in Bellaire.

“I told them they would need security,” said Kovalyk. “We brought this up at a commissioners’ meeting. And now we are just fortunate that this particular incident was resolved peacefully.”

Kovalyk said Asher was in court facing charges of persistent disorderly conduct, obstructing justice and resisting arrest.

Police said about a week earlier, he and his domestic partner, 19-year old Natalie Fagundo, were allegedly spitting on people outside Imperial Plaza and did not cooperate with police.

In fact, Fagundo reportedly clawed the arm of a police officer in the process. Police say Fagundo remains in jail.

But they say Asher is still out on bond, but without his knife and brass knuckles, which he said were religious items and not weapons.