Sheriff beefs up courthouse security |

Sheriff beefs up courthouse security

Post Independent/Kelley Cox

If you’re thinking about bringing a pocketknife into the Garfield County Courthouse, a friendly Sheriff’s deputy will be waiting at the door to keep you from entering. Beginning Monday, the Garfield County Sheriff’s Department closed the courthouse’s front and west entrances to the public, funneling people through a security checkpoint at the east entrance.

Everyone entering the courthouse will be required to pass through security, which includes a metal detector and X-ray machine for bags.Undersheriff Tim Templon said judges initially asked for heightened security at the courthouse following a 2005 courthouse shooting in Atlanta that killed a judge. He said people are not known to have brought handguns into the courtroom, but suspicious items have been found in the past.

“We’re growing up here,” Templon said of Garfield County. “We’re starting to get bigger,” and that means more people heading to the courthouse who would bring a weapon inside. In addition to screening courthouse visitors, deputies will also direct people to appropriate courtrooms and offices.

Public access to the building is limited to weekdays between 7:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.

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