Courtroom Safety Worries Houston Area Judges Amid Recent Violent Incidents

HOUSTON – The man who attacked a Nevada judge on Wednesday now has even more charges to face when he heads back to court on Tuesday. The judge suffered minor injuries, and a courtroom marshal had to be hospitalized with a gash on his head and a dislocated shoulder.

In the wake of that violent attack, some judges in Harris County are addressing safety concerns. Harris County Justice of the Peace Judge Joe Stephens explains that the loss of Clint Greenwood in Precinct 3 has heightened the importance of safety. Greenwood, an Assistant Chief Deputy with the Harris County Constable’s Office Precinct 3, was shot to death outside the Baytown Courthouse Annex in 2017.

The incident in Las Vegas, where Judge Mary Kay Holthus was attacked by a defendant during a court proceeding, has also raised concerns about courtroom safety. Judge Stephens chairs the Security Committee for area justice courts. He highlights the implementation of bulletproof glass windows and benches as some of the safety measures taken, but believes more needs to be done.

Harris County Justice of the Peace Wanda Adams recounts how a bomb threat was made to her office, emphasizing the need for heightened security in courtrooms. Both judges express the importance of safety measures as they work on House Bill 3671, a JP security bill, aiming to make metal detectors mandatory in courthouses.

The article concludes with details of the additional charges faced by the attacker of the Nevada judge, highlighting the need for enhanced security in courtrooms to ensure the safety of judges and court personnel.