American kills himself in Taiwan courtroom after he was sentenced to 4 years in jail on drug charges

A 41-year-old American man and father of
two, Tyrel Martin Marhanka, was sitting in a
courtroom in Taiwan during his sentencing on
drug possession charges when he
suddenly pulled a sharp object and stabbed it
deep into his neck, unleashing a gush of blood,
according to the Taipei Times.
Some witnesses said the object he stabbed
himself with was a pair of scissors, while
others said they saw him use two metallic
objects. Court officials told the Times that
Marhanka separated a pair of scissors into two
sharp blades and plunged it into his neck.
The shocking incident took place after a judge
gave Marhanka a four-year prison sentence for
smuggling poppy seeds into the country and
growing marijuana.
Marhanka was married to a Taiwanese woman
and had two children, and he had lived in the
island for over 15 years, AFP reported.
Marhanka was arrested in April 2015 after
police discovered a large stash of illegal drugs
at a rented house which he lived in. The drugs
included hundreds of cannabis plants and 10
opium poppies.
He told police the plants were a “hobby” that
he intended to use on his own and that he had
no intention to sell them.
Witnesses said that after the judge read the
sentence out loud, Marhanka turned to the
interpreter, who informed him of the
sentence.
“Four years?” a shocked Marhanka was heard
saying.
The interpreter explained to Marhanka that
the sentence could be appealed, but Marhanka
said he didn’t want to do so.
“I don’t want to live anymore,” he yelled,
before stabbing himself in the neck and
severing at least one artery.
He was rushed to a hospital, where he died.
“We deeply regret that Tyrel Martin
Marhanka killed himself during the
sentencing,” the court said in a
statement. “He was cooperative during
the investigation and the trial. His
attitude was mild and he did not show
any signs that he would commit suicide.”

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Source: The Times

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