Council, Judge Confer on Security at Pulaski Courthouse

Pulaski County CourthousePulaski County Circuit Court Judge Michael Shurn is hoping to work with the County Council to increase security.

The comments came earlier this week during a joint session of the County Commissioners and Council. Judge Shurn says he has formed a committee to review safety and make proposals, but addressed the two bodies to ensure they were cooperating.

Shurn says it’s about more than his safety.

“You have all your employees in this courthouse that are concerned about security,” says Shurn Security in the courtroom isn’t worth a whole bunch if you’ve got somebody coming in here at 7:00 when all the doors are open and plants a bomb – which anybody can do.”

Judge Shurn is broadly seen to have authority over his courtroom, but says he believes he has the authority to issue declarations about safety for the entire courthouse if necessary.

The Judge brought up his concerns in the face of e-mails he has allegedly been receiving from the Sovereign Citizens. According to law enforcement, the group does not believe certain unelected offices hold any authority over U.S. citizens.

Pulaski County Council President Jay Sullivan says more discussions need to take place.

“We can’t piecemeal everything. We’ve at least got to have a comprehensive plan so we’ve got a goal of where we’re going, a direction of where we’re going otherwise we’re going to be doing double the work,” says Sullivan.

Sheriff Jeff Richwine said during the meeting that he would look into the e-mails.

While no decisions were made, the committee is expected to begin making proposals to increase security during budget season at the Courthouse in the near future.