The footage shows the moment the defendant, Siale Angilau, a member of the Tongan Crips gang, getting up out of his seat, grabbing a pen, and running towards the witness stand before launching at him. A deputy US marshal, who is only identified a Jane Doe in court documents, fires four shots at him, killing him, KSL in Salt Lake City reported.
Dowdell granted the summary judgment Friday and dismissed the plaintiff's excessive force lawsuit.
The judge also ordered the release of the courtroom video, which had been requested by various news outlets under the Freedom of Information Act and the First Amendment.
Someone is heard yelling: "Whoa, whoa, whoa", but before any officers could react, Angilau sprinted toward the witness and leaped with his right arm cocked overhead with the pen in hand.
"Having carefully reviewed the video of Mr. Angilau's swift flight from counsel table, his vault over the witness stand with pen in hand, and his attempt to violently attack the shackled witness, the court has little difficulty determining that (Jane) Doe's use of force to immediately stop Angilau's attack was objectively reasonable under the totality of the circumstances", Dowdell wrote.
He said: 'Angilau was in custody, but he essentially had escaped custodial control for those seconds during which he was executing his plan to assault the witnesses.
The U.S. marshal who fired the shots was cleared of any wrongdoing.
Family attorney Bob Skyes unsuccessfully argued that the U.S. Marshall "panicked" and could've used another method to subdue Angilau. An FBI investigation found the shooting was legally justified.
Angilau's family sued the court, with attorney Robert Sykes saying Angilau had ceased hostilities after leaping into the witness box.
Faces of the judge, attorneys and jurors are blurred out and the agency declined comment about the release of the video.
He was in court after being one of 17 people named in a 29-count racketeering indictment filed in 2008, which accused gang members of conspiracy, assault, robbery and weapons offenses. He said it is up to the them to decide if they want to appeal the judge's ruling dismissing their lawsuit. Angilau was the last person to be tried, as previous defendants were sentenced to 10 to 30 years behind bars.
They were allowed to view the video but not release it.
Before he died, the incident prompted US District Judge Tena Campbell, who was hearing the case, to declare a mistrial.
The Utah Media Coalition fought for a year for Dowdell to release the footage, according to KUTV in Salt Lake City.