Prisoner Gets More Time For Courtroom Assaults The Incident Came After He Lost A Suit Against A Delco Guard. He Must Serve 77 Months In Federal Prison.

Posted: February 19, 1999

A Delaware County prisoner was sentenced to additional jail time Wednesday in federal court for an assault on a prison guard and the guard's attorney at the conclusion of his civil trial in 1997.

Nevin Jones, 30, already is serving state sentences for arson and assaulting the same corrections officer, William Bishop, at Delaware County Prison in 1995, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Gallagher. On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge J. Curtis Joyner sentenced Jones to 77 months in federal prison for the courtroom assault on Nov. 5, 1997.

Jones said in court Wednesday that he had about seven years remaining in state prison, Gallagher said. Jones will begin serving the federal sentence after he completes his state jail time.

In March 1998, Jones pleaded guilty to assault with a dangerous weapon in the attack on Bishop and attorney Robert DiOrio, which occurred after Jones lost a civil suit against Bishop. The federal suit alleged that Bishop had violated Jones' civil rights in the earlier incident, in which the inmate was convicted of assaulting the prison guard.

The two-day civil trial concluded when the jury found in favor of Bishop. As U.S. District Judge Thomas N. O'Neill Jr. was thanking the jury for its service, Jones erupted.

``He smacked a chair over the head of the prison guard [Bishop] and the guard's lawyer,'' Gallagher said. ``The chair broke into multiple pieces. . . . As he's being restrained, he threatened to kill them.''

Neither Bishop nor DiOrio suffered serious injuries, Gallagher said.

At his sentencing Wednesday, Jones remained calm, the prosecutor said.

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