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This article kinda rubs me the wrong way... basically they are saying that because court personnel don't carry firearms and that there are metal deterctors in the city court, that there won't be an incident like the one in Atlanta...

Gunless city court officers keep their aim on weapons

By LISA REDMOND, Sun Staff
Lowell Sun

LOWELL -- Paul Thompson's drawer is full of weapons: Razors, knives in all shapes and sizes, and the newest item -- cigarette lighters shaped like guns.

His collection comes from a decade of searching people before they get more than a few feet inside Lowell District Court.

“You've got to expect the worst at all times,” said the amiable Thompson, an associate court officer who works in security.

The worst in Lowell's court has never compared to the security nightmare that court officials in Atlanta faced last Friday. Brian Nichols allegedly overpowered a courthouse deputy escorting him to his rape trial, took her gun and killed a judge, court officer and another deputy.

Nichols is also accused of killing a federal agent during his flight from authorities, which ended Saturday when he surrendered to police after holding a woman hostage in her own apartment.

But there's a big difference between what happened in Georgia and what could happen in a Massachusetts court. Court employees in Massachusetts do not carry firearms.

“I've had a lot of family members call me since the shootings in Atlanta,” said Associate Court Officer Rhonda Kopacz, “but I tell them I feel safe.”

Kopacz, who works security at Lowell Superior Court, said she doesn't want to carry a gun as part of her job.

“I don't have concerns about safety because nobody is armed (in the courthouse),” she said.

Lowell Superior Court Judge Robert Bohn told jurors the same thing.

“That is the one important thing,” Bohn said after the Atlanta shootings. “There are no guns here.”

Trial Courts allow police officers to carry their weapons in a courthouse. Police officers appearing in Lowell Superior Court check their guns in locked compartments near the security desk.

With the use of scanners and metal detectors, court personnel say the courthouses are safe without arming court officials with guns.

Security personnel are trained to read the scanner to detect suspicious objects being inside bags and jackets, while metal detectors catch metal objects.

Thompson said co-worker Patti Choate is “the best on the monitor nothing gets past her.”

More than 200,000 citizens per year walk through the doors at Lowell District Court and there has never been a major incident, Thompson said.

Thompson said there is no need for court personnel to carry a gun. “That's reactionary It is overkill,” he said.

Chief Justice Robert Mulligan said that statewide, the courts have “effective” courthouse-security policies and procedures in place to safeguard judges, employees, and everyone who uses courthouses.

Trained court officers confiscate thousands of weapons and other items each month, Mulligan said.

And Big Brother is watching.

Peppered throughout Lowell Superior Court are small cameras focused on the inner workings of the courthouse. The images are shown on a multi-image television screen, monitored by a court officer.

In addition, there are panic buttons in the both clerks' offices. One push of the button and court officers come running.

There are some cameras in Lowell and Ayer's district courts, but Chief Court Officer Daniel MacGilvray said he wants to apply for a Homeland Security grant to improve the security system, in part with more cameras.

While the Trial Court is satisfied with its current security system, it “continually monitors security procedures as warranted,” Mulligan said.

In the fiscal 2006 budget request, the Trial Court has asked the Governor and Legislature for 50 additional court officers and 25 associate court officers to deploy in courts where they are needed.

The Legislature has been responsive to the Trial Court's requests for court security over the past years, he said.
 

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What a joke. I am glad I don't have to go to Lowell court.
Shit bag walks up to court house main entrance shoots two security guards working the door, then walks through the metal detector and goes on a killing spree that will only end when the the shit bag chooses it to end. That makes sense.
God I love Massachusetts. :twisted:
Before you know it we will have to lock our firearms up at the station and if we need them we will have to get clearance form the chief to sign them out.
 

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That is ridiculous to have trained police officers lock their guns in a locker while they are in court. Any disaster like the one in GA can be averted by carrying a tripple retention holster that way the only person to get the gun out would be you. I bet you that the holster they carried in GA were just regular cheapo holster that only had a crappy thumb break on them.

Scott :rock:
 

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Topcop14 I have to side with ya one this one. And this Patty Choate who braggs to be the best camera monitor, what a joke, I mean its good that she takes her job seriously and I respect that. But like you said all a shitbag has to do is walk throught the doors get in line and decide to take a dozen people, so much for be good at monitoring the monitor.

Its happened at colleges, its happened at high schools, and its happened in the work place, well folks the courts are over due, i'm suprised it did not start there. I mean emotions run high in court houses with people feeling like they are getting screwed. You all have seen how people get over ticket appeals and arraignments you mean to tell me that no one thinks they will come back and want revenge, its already happened in the places I have mentioned above.

Then there is family court, talk about high emotions as far as im concerned that is a shooting spree waitng to happen, and the juvenille courts, well hell we already know kids are just itching to blast the place, christ just ask the kids that did it in the schools over the last ten years.

Before you walk to the monitor you are still inside the building, well one of these days someone will say fuck this and pull out a .40 and start blasting, I would like to ask all these judges and court officers who dont think guns are needed in the court, I want to ask them, so what happens next, just what are the court officers expected to do if they arent one of the ones taken out first.
 

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From the school shooting incident.

As Weise entered the school through a doorway with a metal detector, he was confronted by 28-year-old Derrick Brun, an unarmed guard. Weise shot Brun to death before proceeding into the school, :shock: Tabman said. A videotape shows Weise in a hallway, but doesn't capture any of the shootings, he said.

Some one should forward this to the nit wits at the Ma trial courts.
 

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Sounds like MA again just wants all LE to carry rubber guns or they could put them in a glass case that says "Break in case of emergency" and make the glass shatterproof.
 

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"Kopacz, who works security at Lowell Superior Court, said she doesn't want to carry a gun as part of her job.
"I don't have concerns about safety because nobody is armed (in the courthouse)," she said."


It's not always the folks INSIDE that you have to worry about... what about the Joe Shitbird who comes back to kill a Judge because of a sentence he got that cost the shitbird his job, wife and kids? Don't worry, INSIDE the courthouse nobody is armed... including the Police Officers in there :shock:, That's good, because then the only one with a gun will be the crazy gunman that kills the Court Officers at the entrance and goes on a rampage. :shock:

With the use of scanners and metal detectors, court personnel say the courthouses are safe without arming court officials with guns.
Security personnel are trained to read the scanner to detect suspicious objects being inside bags and jackets, while metal detectors catch metal objects.
Thompson said co-worker Patti Choate is "the best on the monitor nothing gets past her."


I hope Patti is also quick to duck and run when she see's a crazed guman walking in the door.

It's one thing that dumbass administrators think this way, but the Court Officers too?!?!? :shock: They're just as nuts. :evil:
 

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"Trial Courts allow police officers to carry their weapons in a courthouse. Police officers appearing in Lowell Superior Court check their guns in locked compartments near the security desk. "

Same goes for Suffolk Superior Court, no guns allowed. I have seen everybody from every different agency bitched out in Suffolk Superior Court for being on the stand with a weapon on their hip. Only guys allowed to carry in the building (supposedly) are the GSA guys and the BPD officers assigned to court.

Foxracingmtnridr,
From what I have read recently , the lady Deputy in GA had just secured her weapon in a locked box when that s#itbird jumped her & beat her down. Took the key and retrieved the weapon himself. Didn't matter what kind of holster she had. Strength & resolve won that battle.

I am not a big proponent of having every Court Officer armed here in Mass. It took 2 shootings, one which resulted in an officer being killed, to convince the brass in Boston to have no firearms in the booking areas.

To every call we go to, there is at least ONE firearm present. YOURS.
 

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Court Officers feel safe because they have metal detectors at the front doors! Are you kidding me? :shock: I have been to a couple of different court systems in MA (plain clothes, no uniform) and I cant tell you how many times I walked in the door and the so called front door Officer watching this metal detector is on his cell phone and as the detector beeps, they just say your all set go ahead :roll: are you kidding me, and they feel safe. Good luck to those guys.
 

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Ignorance and poor professional attitudes. These court officers who feel safe about metal detectors should read the account of the VA police officers shot/killed at the Bronx VAMC. They were manning a metal detector! despite administrators at every level crying and moaning, The VA Police got armed.(John Baffa) Nobody has been killed in LOD death since that I know of! Too bad it took several VA Police deaths for it to happen.
:shock:
 

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Definately front door coverage should be armed. Officers should be allowed to carry in court.



"As Weise entered the school through a doorway with a metal detector, he was confronted by 28-year-old Derrick Brun, an unarmed guard. Weise shot Brun to death before proceeding into the school,"

topcop14 are you saying that highschool security guards should be armed because that's definately an overreaction. You can arm sports officials, shop owners, and priests and someone is still going to find a way to go on a killing spree. Sometime's more guns isn't the answer, but it definately is in the court system.
 

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PBiddy35";p="61043 said:
topcop14 are you saying that highschool security guards should be armed because that's definately an overreaction.
If a school is having a problem with violence and weapons then they should have police officers assigned to the school, not security guards. I don't believe Derrick Brun's family would think it was an overreaction.

Sports officials, shop owners, and priests don't have a duty to preserve the peace and protect life, law enforcement officers do.
 

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Certainly school police officers are in place to do just that, preserve peace and protect life, I was speaking of unsworn security guards, which are far more likely to be found in a high school. I know cities typically have a police officer assigned to problem high schools but the guys there to break up fights and stop kids from skipping class are far more common.
 

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Whats worse are the private security guards that are armed. I would much rather have a sworn officer at these places. Why are the court officers unarmed? The Judges want it that way? Do they prefer that only the criminals carry weapons?
 

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PBiddy35";p="61043 said:
Definately front door coverage should be armed. Officers should be allowed to carry in court.

topcop14 are you saying that highschool security guards should be armed because that's definately an overreaction. You can arm sports officials, shop owners, and priests and someone is still going to find a way to go on a killing spree. Sometime's more guns isn't the answer, but it definately is in the court system.
Not sure on the school guards being armed. The reason I mentioned the school incident was because it is similar to what could happen at the court house.
The school district in my jurisdiction does not have security guards. You get buzzed in by the secretary.
 

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Most schools in other states have school district police, fully armed and all. Im suprised Brockton high has a full armed police dept but Boston worcester springfield and the other cess pools in this state doesnt, strange.
 

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Macop";p="61110 said:
Im suprised Brockton high has a full armed police dept but Boston worcester springfield and the other cess pools in this state doesnt, strange.
Right!!

And let me tell you something..........those Brockton School Police are 99.98% as professional as the Massasoit Police. Don't EVEN think about taking them on. You'll lose
:wink:
 

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The presiding justice in N. Berkshire Dist. wanted to stop officers from carrying in court. The idea got knocked down quickly but makes all officers carrying sit with backs against the wall.

I think the way Mass courts security is set up now is a safe system but defiantly think the security should be armed.
 
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