WEST BRIGHTON — A prisoner wrestled a police officer who was guarding him in a Staten Island hospital and tried to grab her gun before being talked down by another patient, according to police and reports.
Dante Martin, 36, had been taken to Richmond University Medical Center after being arrested on weapons charges.
He asked to use a bathroom then attacked a 28-year-old officer guarding him at about 7:30 a.m. Sunday, a spokesman for the NYPD said.
He punched the officer in the stomach, threw her to the ground, jumped on top of her and repeatedly tried to grab her gun and remove it from the holster, prosecutors said.
A patient on the same floor, Rafael Muniz, heard the rookie officer cry for help and grabbed Martin's arm, ABC 7 reported.
"He had a moment of clarity, looked at me and I said, 'you don't have to do it'," Muniz, 42, told ABC 7.
"His reply was, 'But I have my finger on the trigger.' I told him, 'Just take it off the trigger' — after the second time, he did."
Martin was charged with attempted murder, assault, attempted robbery, criminal possession of a weapon, attempted escape, menacing and attempted criminal possession of a weapon at his Monday arraignment, the Staten Island District Attorney's office said.
Before the incident in the hospital, Martin was arrested on Aug. 25 after he repeatedly walked by a woman while taking a gun in and out of his pocket in front 65 Holland Ave. at about 6:05 p.m., prosecutors said.
When officers arrived, Martin threw the loaded Glock 23 to the ground in front of 55 Holland Ave. then resisted arrested, according to court papers.
He was taken to the hospital for seizures after his arrest, the Staten Island Advance reported.
Martin has been arrested several times before and was out on parole since January after a stint in Woodbourne Correctional Facility for assault and attempted criminal possession of a weapon, according to state Department of Corrections records.
He also spent eight years behind bars for attempted assault until his release in 2007, Department of Corrections records show.
After his latest arrest Martin was held without bail and he's due back in court on Sept. 21, according to online court records.
Contact information for his lawyer was not immediately available.