In The Wake Of tumultuous Threats, Retired U.S. Marshal Gives Advice On Judicial Gun Ownership
In The Wake Of Violent Threats, Retired U.S. Marshal Gives Advice On Judicial Gun Ownership
You have to be up-to-date on training, you have to have a good holster, with weapon retention, you have to keep it secured in your home in a safe. It’s not just a matter of getting it, leaving it in a bag and pulling it out when you need it. If you have security in your courtroom, let your bailiff know, but mostly don’t carry it in the courtroom because I think there’s too much of a risk with a judge carrying a firearm in a courtroom, especially if there’s others in the courtroom that already have a firearm.
– Retired U.S. Marshal John Muffler, who now serves as principal of Aequitas Global Security, a security consulting service, giving his thoughts during a recent American Bar Association event on judicial security, on whether judges should carry a gun for protection, either inside or outside the courtroom. Muffler advised judges against using vanity license plates, noting, “This is a self-inflicted wound. You’re advertising who you are. I don’t read that [ vanity plate] as ‘I’m a judge.’ I read that as ‘follow me to my kids game, this is where I live.’ … Just go with the generic state tag.” As for judges in rural areas, Muffler gave guns for personal security the nod. “I know judges who are hours from a trooper, hours from law enforcement,” he said. “Me? I’m carrying a firearm.”
Staci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.