Cop-killer suspect punches own lawyer

PHILADELPHIA. If accused cop killer Eric Floyd was working on an insanity defense, he may have convinced a few people.

Floyd, who is on trial with Levon Warner for murder in the 2008 death of Sgt. Stephen Liczbinski, punch-ed his court-appointed attorney twice in the back of the head, knocking him to the floor yesterday morning before sheriffs could restrain him. The assault happened during a side session with Floyd, attorney William Bowe and Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes.

Monday, Floyd argued he would rather be executed than have Bowe represent him, claiming Bowe was not keeping him informed. Then Tuesday, Hughes ordered Floyd to watch the rest of the trial from his cell after another outburst.

Bowe was treated and released from the hospital, but will still represent Floyd when jury selection resumes Friday, officials said. Attempts to reach Bowe were unsuccessful.

“It’s an unfortunate situation, and frankly speaking, the young man who punched Mr. Bowe, he had a very fine lawyer,” said Charles Cunningham, first assistant defender with the Defenders Association, where Bowe worked before starting a private practice.

Floyd’s antics have delayed the start of the trial, which is expected to last about six weeks. Howard Cain, the man who allegedly shot Liczbinski, was killed by police, but prosecutors claim Floyd and Warner are culpable.

If convicted of first-degree murder, they could be sentenced to the death penalty.

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