The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

12 March 2005

Freedom vs. Security in Courtrooms

This incident alone will likely tip the scales well toward security:

(Boston Herald- Stephanie Schrorow)

Yesterday's brutal slayings in an Atlanta courthouse underscores the need for tough security in the halls of justice, area judges said.
But, they added, security concerns should be balanced with maintaining an open court system.
Boston's legal community was reeling at the rampage in an Atlanta courtroom that left a judge and two others dead. The murders come in the wake of the shooting of a federal judge's husband and mother in Chicago by a disturbed electrician.
U.S. District Court Judge George A. O'Toole, a member of the judicial conference security committee, said security in the state's federal courts is good.
Security personnel was increased by 10 percent after Sept. 11, 2001, and, with new detection technology, ``it's fair to say people can feel pretty secure once they're inside our courthouse,'' he said.
However, O'Toole said the committee will consider providing security in judges' homes. ``This incident (in Chicago) does dramatically bring it home,'' he said.


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