Questions about security at even small county courthouses were raised by a gunman’s entering the Crawford County, Ar. courthouse Tuesday while armed with three semi-automatic weapons, Reuters reported. The gunman wounded a judge’s secretary in a shooting rampage (see Gavel Grab).
“For many years we have recognized the potential dangers for judges and their employees,” Supreme Court Chief Justice Jim Hannah said, noting that he and other jurists have been trying to call attention to the issue. ”But this isn’t just about protecting judges. We want the courts to be accessible and safe for everyone who uses the legal system.” The episode prompted a reexamination of security measures at small courthouses.