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(IN) Police told to leave guns at door

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Drizzt, Jul 22, 2003.

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  1. Drizzt

    Drizzt Member

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    Police told to leave guns at door

    Lake County judges want no guns in court, but officers warn of dangerous situations.

    Associated Press
    July 22, 2003

    CROWN POINT, Ind. -- Judges and police officials are squaring off over a suggestion to turn Lake County courthouses into gun-free workplaces.

    Judges support the idea, but officers call it dangerous.

    A majority of Superior Court judges issued an order last month requiring everyone -- including police officers -- who enters county government buildings in Crown Point, East Chicago, Gary and Hammond to check their guns at the front door.

    The only exceptions: the judges' own security force and officers who are escorting prisoners.

    The policy has been withdrawn for additional review, but the judges stand behind it.

    "It's inappropriate for police officers to come into the courtrooms with weapons on them. It's not necessary," Judge Gerald Svetanoff told The Times of Munster for a story Monday.

    The judges' plan has triggered an angry reaction from some police departments.

    Merrillville Police Chief John Shelhart asked the judges to reconsider in a letter to Chief Superior Court Judge James Danikolas.

    Dyer Police Chief Donald Parker said in a letter to the judges that the police would put the "officers and everyone else in peril."

    The Lake County Council also took the officers' side this month. The council approved an ordinance banning guns carried by the general public and non-police employees, but allowed law enforcement officers to carry weapons when on duty.

    County commissioners have yet to sign that proposed ordinance into county law.

    In the meantime, Danikolas agreed to withdraw the policy while judges and court security officials re-examine it.

    Police have argued that some county courthouses have inadequate gun lockers and that many officers are forbidden from leaving their guns in their squad cars because they could be stolen.

    Superior Court Judge John Pera said he worries about people in his courtroom reaching out and grabbing police officers' weapons when they walk by.

    Not all judges agree with the no-guns policy, including Judge Clarence Murray, who said asking an officer to remove his gun showed a lack of understanding about the connection an officer has with his weapon.

    "It's part of their uniform, part of their code," Murray said. "I always found it a comfort to have an armed officer in the court."

    Pera disagreed.

    "In my view, and I know this isn't a popular thing to say in terms of the police chiefs, but just because an incident hasn't occurred, doesn't mean one won't occur," he said.

    http://www.indystar.com/print/articles/1/059727-9731-009.html
     
  2. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    Considering judges have guns up on the bench, why are they so frightened of the Hammond, Whiting, East Chicago or Gary PD?:confused:
     
  3. pax

    pax Member

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    Sauce for the goose, sauce for the gander.

    pax

    The police of a state should never be stronger or better armed than the citizenry. An armed citizenry, willing to fight, is the foundation of civil freedom. -- Robert Heinlein
     
  4. Lord Grey Boots

    Lord Grey Boots Member

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    I guess the armed court security won't have their guns snatched "as they walk by" either.

    The judge's argument doesnt make sense.
     
  5. Drjones

    Drjones member

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    Awwww....da big govewmint doesn't wike it when it can't do what it wants, huh?

    Ditto Pax.

    I wish I could read more stories like this.
     
  6. Fed168

    Fed168 Member

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    Clearly a lack of understanding on the judge's part. They may enter the courtroom, but without their issued gavel and harsh voice.

    That will make the courtroom safer for everyone.
     
  7. DJJ

    DJJ Member

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    Double ditto. If the people don't have them, the police don't need them.
     
  8. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    Exceptions, exceptions, exceptions! Curiously, our social betters never think to make exceptions for us commoners.
     
  9. Raymond VanDerLinden

    Raymond VanDerLinden Member

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    Drjones, DJJ, Standing Wolf, and Pax

    So you believe that the person on trail for killing your spouse and Children, whom you Saw do the act, should be allowed to bring his firearms to court? After all he is a Citizen Right?

    Also you would have no problem with having the Father of a girl that you were wrongfully charged with Raping and Killing sitting behind you with his .45 when you are found not guilty?

    Give me a break!!! Please!!!!
     
  10. TheeBadOne

    TheeBadOne Member

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    What is becoming standard in courtrooms across the country is that only on-duty LEO's are allowed to carry their sidearms in the courthouse, and they have to be there on official business (testifing, guard duty, transport, etc), not just "on-duty".
    What this courthouse is trying to do would offend any cop. They are disarming a LEO while he is not only "on-duty", but acting in official capacity while being disarmed. I wonder where the "never relinquish your weapon" golden rule gets shoved. :rolleyes:
     
  11. SDC

    SDC Member

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    "So you believe that the person on trail for killing your spouse and Children, whom you Saw do the act, should be allowed to bring his firearms to court? After all he is a Citizen Right?

    Also you would have no problem with having the Father of a girl that you were wrongfully charged with Raping and Killing sitting behind you with his .45 when you are found not guilty?

    Give me a break!!! Please!!!!"

    Uhhh, who said ANYTHING about allowing the ACCUSED to possess or carry a firearm (let alone any other potential weapon)? As for some relatives of someone that you're accused of trying to harm or kill, what makes you think that the courthouse offers you any sort of protection? If they want to kill you, they could just as easily do it on the courthouse steps, or in your driveway at home :rolleyes: It sounds to me like you believe that ordinary people are just too unstable to be trusted with firearms.
     
  12. sm

    sm member

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    Ditto pax
    Ditto Standing Wolf, DJJ and DRJones

    FWIW, I have been a juror, and foreman numerous times. I have also had the accused, the accused family/friends threaten my life and my family numerous times... including in front of Judge and Baliff.

    I still agree with pax
     
  13. Raymond VanDerLinden

    Raymond VanDerLinden Member

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    So then you are saying.............

    that if I accuse you of a crime, or you are charged with a crime you lose your rights until found to be not guilty? If all innocent Citizens should be allowed to carry in court then until found guilty you are considered innocent in this Country. Therefore you would have to be allowed to carry into court until the verdict.

    SDC, if you would not question your own stability if your Daughter was raped and murdered............... well I pity your Daughter.

    Next, Where did I say the Goverment Owes or should Owe you any protection, except when you are in Goverment Custody, you know like inside a courtroom.

    As to what I believe about RKBA.................. well Sir, I don't think you know me. I would fill you in on my beliefs except I have to leave for a Class.
     
  14. hammer4nc

    hammer4nc Member

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    Interesting how practical problems with gun bans in public buildings suddenly become an issue only when they affect those who expect to be exempted from the law? Hypocrites.
     
  15. lapidator

    lapidator Member

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    [pure speculation]

    I wonder if this is evidence of increasingly poor quality LEOs? Perhaps the judges have decided they have as much to fear from LEOs as they do from defendants?

    [/pure speculation]

    Lapidator
     
  16. GinSlinger

    GinSlinger Member

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    While I agree with Pax etal, what I am MOST surprised with is that no one has commented on this:
    No longer satisfied with inventing law in the form of rulings, these judges have decided to take it a step further. The judges issued an order?!? I'm sorry, I can't find the words right now. Might as well stop electing city/county governments up there in Ill, the judges can take care of it with their orders. *shakes head and walks away*

    GinSlinger
     
  17. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    Gin, the power of direct contempt is truly terrifying.:uhoh: Especially for those that face it everyday!:D Eddie Haskell up.
     
  18. cordex

    cordex Member

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    Well, the way I see it, any argument that can be made against "mere civilians" carrying in a courthouse can be made against LEOs.

    And one more time for everyone who wasn't paying attention:
    The same allowance that provides for disarmament in a courthouse also allows municipalities to create "gun free zones" in parks, city offices or any other property controlled by the city.

    If they can, they will, right El Tee?
     
  19. SDC

    SDC Member

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    It's accepted practice that persons IN CUSTODY lose most of the rights they have to self-protection; that responsibility is supposed to fall onto the people holding them in custody. Your other point makes no more sense, however; unless you're suggesting that the victim of a crime, the accused in that crime, and the extended families of both of those parties all lose their rights to self-preservation and the RKBA, your "solution" doesn't even begin to make sense. If a father believes that I raped his daughter and got away with it, he could kill me not only in the courtroom, he could kill me in ANY OTHER conceivable place just as easily.
     
  20. Drjones

    Drjones member

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    :rolleyes:

    Yes, I believe that accused criminals should be allowed to carry guns.

    :rolleyes:
     
  21. Drjones

    Drjones member

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    How so?
     
  22. Mike Irwin

    Mike Irwin Member

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    Ultimately, it really comes down to the fact that in a judge's court room, the judge is the law, and has, in many areas, wide discretionary power over what goes on in court.


    "The same allowance that provides for disarmament in a courthouse also allows municipalities to create "gun free zones" in parks, city offices or any other property controlled by the city."

    No, I don't think that's the case at all, Cordex.

    The powers of a judge in his court room over proceedings and processes go far back into English Common Law, but those powers do not generally extend beyond the court room.

    When you talk about municipalities creating gun-free zones, you're talking about a separate branch of government -- legislative vs. judicial.
     
  23. cordex

    cordex Member

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    Mike,
    In this case, you're right. I didn't pay enough attention to the original article. If the judges are mandating the gewehrfrei zone, then it isn't the same thing or based on the same authority as city councils doing it.
     
  24. GinSlinger

    GinSlinger Member

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    Mr. Irwin
    The article states that Judges have banned guns from "county government buildings", not just their coutrooms. I believe that this takes contempt and judges discretionary powers far beyond anything in common law. It is a dictate. Why worry about the left? Prepare for the black robe oligarchy.

    All rise and bow. Ouie, Ouie.

    GinSlinger
     
  25. Duncan Idaho

    Duncan Idaho member

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    The one redeeming factor that elitist dimwits possess, is that they eventually turn on each other.

    To all of the LEOs that never flinched when the non-LEOs rights were taken, CONGRATULATIONS!!!

    Hope you don't mind going into court to testify against the 275 lb. murderer as an unarmed boob.

    HEH! :fire: :fire: :fire:
     
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