Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson responds to dad's attempted attack on Larry Nassar
The trial of disgraced U.S. Olympics doctor Larry Nassar has been full of emotional moments. During a seven day hearing, 169 of his victims read statements, confronting their abuser face to face. Then Judge Rosemarie Aqualina tossed away Nassar's non-apologetic letter to the court, asking "Would you like to withdraw your plea?" After pleading guilty to multiple charges of sexual assault, she sentenced him to up to 175 years in prison remarking, "I’ve just signed your death warrant....you do not deserve to walk outside of a prison ever again." (This judge was pretty awesome.)
However, perhaps the most emotional moment happened today. Randal Margraves has two daughters who testified about the abuse they suffered from Nassar, and a third daughter of his was reportedly mistreated as well. He asked Judge Janice Cunningham for "five minutes in a locked room with this demon." Then he asked for just one minute. Then he ran at the defendant in an attempt to physically attack him, but was restrained by the officers before he could reach him. They led him out of the courtroom in handcuffs.
It's an incredible video, and many parents could sympathize with Margraves' outburst. Among them? The People's Champion himself, Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson. The wrestler turned movie star responded on Twitter, writing "We all understand this father’s action. Nassar’s punishment will go far beyond sentencing. Behind bars, he’ll soon know what hell means. He’ll be well taken care of." It's true - the disgraced doctor has no chance of leaving prison alive. (And had The Rock been in the courtroom, the officers probably wouldn't have been able to stop him.)
Johnson's tweet got over 25,000 retweets, and 90,000 likes. In the comments, almost everyone agreed with the actor, saying they understand the father's anger, and would feel the same way if they were in his situation.
"Hopefully the father doesn't get charged with anything. Anybody who has kids should know the anger he was feeling. I for one would have done the same thing."
"I know that's harsh. But if anyone ever tried to hurt a child in my care... they'd be hurting when I was done with them. They can throw me in jail, but if a sexual predator is no longer able to hurt another child. I'd be happy."
"I really wish he could have gotten just one hand on him. My heart breaks for all involved."
Afterward, Larry Margraves was released from custody, and apologized to the court. "I'm embarrassed," he said. "I'm not here to upstage my daughters. I'm here to help them heal." Judge Cunningham replied that she "cannot tolerate or condone vigilantism," but “given the circumstances of the case," she would not dole out any punishment to the father.
"My heart goes out to you and your family for what you've been through," said the Judge. "I don’t know what it would be like to stand there as a father and know that three of your girls were injured physically and emotionally by somebody sitting in a courtroom. I can't fathom that."
Neither can we. And Larry Margraves shouldn't feel embarrassed - a lot of people, including The Rock - are on his side.