Man accused of beating neighbor with a stick in Jefferson Co. courthouse


by Karma Dickerson

Posted on May 15, 2012 at 12:24 PM

Updated Tuesday, May 15 at 9:01 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Blaine Harper is accused of beating a man with a stick after police said he sneaked a tree limb into the Jefferson County Hall of Justice. Harper is accused of beating his neighbor, Mark Rudolph, who he was already charged with assaulting.

“He sucker punched me in my mouth, said "Imma kill you I'mma kill you", says Mark Rudolph.

After his neighbor attacked him last month, Mark Rudolph called police and was able to get a restraining order until his trial.  He said his neighbor's constant threats and harassment made him afraid to walk around the neighborhood.  Little did Rudolph know, he'd have more to fear in court than at home.

On Monday Rudolph came to the hall of justice to testify against his neighbor Blaine Harper for the April assault.  But when Harper saw him in court, he attacked him again using a three foot tree branch, and cracking his rib.

The tree branch isn't something that would set off a metal detector and Rudolph actually watched his neighbor carry it through security, but he never imagined that Harper would attack him in open court.

“I said well he's not going to hit us sheriff, police officers, he's not going to pull anything," remembers Rudolph.

That bold behavior doesn't surprise the two men's neighbors.  They say Blaine Harper usually has erratic behavior and had been harassing mark Rudolph and another neighbor for months, but they question whether the Harper’s numerous arrests for assault and harassment do any good.

"I think they should sit there prove he's mentally insane or put him away or something or help him or get him some counseling," says a neighbor.

Rudolph agrees that his neighbor is unstable, and wonders how he keeps getting released after his arrests.  But the question that really stumps him is how security let Harper pass with something that could be used as a weapon.

The Jefferson County Sheriff's office handles security for the courthouse. They wouldn't talk to WHAS11 on camera Tuesday but they say they agree that Blaine Harper slipped through the cracks of the security screening, and are trying to find out how. However they also wanted to point out that this is a rare event, but they plan to get to the bottom of it.