Georgia man gets 20 years in attack on courtroom deputy

By WCTV Eyewitness News
June 15, 2019

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WCTV) -- A Georgia man has received a 20-year prison sentence without the possibility of parole after he admitted attacking a Chatham County deputy sheriff in court last year.

The Savannah Morning News reports 43-year-old Ernest Lee Brooks, of Savannah, pleaded guilty to aggravated battery on deputy James Barbee before Judge Penny Haas Freesemann on Feb. 1, 2018. He also pleaded guilty to a related charge of obstruction of Barbee "in the lawful discharge of his official duties."

As a result, Barbee suffered a torn rotator cuff and disc damage. His arm remains in a sling.

Because Brooks has five prior felonies - each involving law enforcement - the sentence was a mandatory 20 years, but Superior Court Judge Louisa Abbot could have probated a portion of it during Friday's hearing.