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Discussion in 'Cop Talk' started by Burgers Allday, Jan 11, 2016.
Blog post by Judge Kopf:
Judge Kopf ~~~~ Pfffftttt
His court his rules. When we serve papers at our jail, we have to lock up our weapons before entering. No different.
Not the same, Jake.
No, not quite the same. Jail is a security issue and in the state of Texas in fact, its a crime.
There are certain courts in my jurisdiction where we have to lockup our weapons in the bailiff's office before entering the courtroom to testify. It is a hassle but we have to do it.
We're pretty sure it is a power thing and not a prejudiced jury/security thing since not every court is like that.
Heck, even the duke would disarm while testifying in judge Parker's court.
All federal courts are that way.
The judge is a db. Its a power trip. Who do you think the first person shot would be? Thats right the uniformed and unarmed officer. Is the SO going to put its top marksmen in that courtroom? How many deputies are there. If there are two a lot of times 1 is unarmed since they are dealing with the in custody defendant.
I would bet that should something happen then the officer would react and too late realize they dont have a weapon.
The judge should get rid of his sidearm that he carries under the robes also.
That's how it is here as well; We are in a huge 5-county circuit, covering almost 6,000 square miles, and about 20 years ago the chief judge for the circuit took a US Marshal's Service security assessment that said that only bailiff personnel were to be armed and mandated that this was the recommended course of action for the circuit; some of the senior circuit judges went with it as it stood , but a few judges simply had every single LEO who came through the door declared a "bailiff" , so they could still carry; those judges said that they wanted every armed cop they could get in their court...of course, most of the judges are armed themselves.....
It's the judge's courtroom.
If a local Sheriff, CoP or DA has a problem with such an order for a particular judge's courtroom, they can probably discuss it with the PJ for that court. If that judge is the PJ at that time, is it really worth the fuss to argue about it, in the greater scheme of things?
In the meantime, if I had to testify in that courtroom, I'd certainly not knowingly disobey a sitting judge's order (nor even that of a pro tem). Nor would I act in any manner that seemed disrespectful of the court, or could be misconstrued as unprofessional or caused any sort of embarrassment to my agency. Why needlessly complicate your career and life?? Common sense.
What's the point of this thread topic, OP? It's not like this is some rare event. (Tell me you're not just taking some weird glee or enjoyment in seeing LE treated "like everyone else".)
Concealed means concealed.
Of course that is what he is doing.
I haven't thought about the issue a whole lot. Upon initial consideration, I share the concern that it could unduly influence a jury (or even a judge) in making credibility determinations. As far as the judge being in total control of the courtroom, I am less concerned about that as an abstract principle. For example, the judge might have the power to require that all police officers testify while wearing beanies with propellers on top, but that would be unwise and unfair and something that should be effectively overruled if it ever happened, notwithstanding the judge's power over her own courtroom.
I don't mind leaving my gun off as long as I have an M67 in my pocket.
Seems like that might cause the judge to start having the bailiff frisk LEO's at the courtroom door.
Our county juvenile court is like that. Must lockup our duty guns. Needless to say, we're all concealing backups. Our muni court thought about doing this but we told our judges, fine. We'll stop ticketing and arresting people so we won't have to come to your court. He decided not to make it a policy to disarm us.
Just like others above, our juvenile court makes us lock up our weapons in a gun box.
Also, last month our station got gun boxes installed in the juvenile processing room, the front lobby and in our report writing/holding cells room. I was going to ask why they were being installed but I never got around to it since I was preoccupied with my impending departure. I heard unofficially that they want officers processing juveniles to disarm first.
This more than troubles me if it is so. It would have been another reason I couldn't get out of thete fast enough.
On the one hand, the judge rules the courtroom...
On the other hand... the whole "seeing witnesses testifying while carrying a gun" doesn't make any sense whatsoever, especially if LEO is in uniform. People are kinda used to seeing LEOs in uniform AND having a gun on their hip... so the judge's reasoning doesn't really hold water.
Ultimately, however... the judge rules the courtroom...
To try to explain the opposite perspective, when a judge allows a police officer to testify in uniform, then that doesn't really imply that the court trusts the police-uniformed witness any more than anybody else.
However, when the judge allows the police officer to wear a gun (while not allowing other witnesses to have guns) then that does imply a degree of trust and confidence on the part of the court. It is that implicit message that that some judges consider to be unfair.
The message the judge probably wants to send is: "We may trust this person with a gun outside of my courtroom, but when the police officer steps into this special place (that is, my courtroom), she gets no more trust than anybody else." It can encourage jurors to shift their mindset to be impartial in a way that they are not required to be out on the mean streets.