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Thread: Skagit County Court House in Mount Vernon WA

  1. #1
    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    In need of further education please!

    As I passed by the Larry E. Moller Public Safety Building in Mount Vernon, WA I noticed a sign posted stating “firearms are prohibited in this building” This building houses the Sheriffs Office, Jail& District Court, across the street is the Superior Court Building. I called to ask if there were drop boxes at either of the court building entrances to check in a firearm. I was told no, only LE was authorized to carry past the front door.

    I though there was an RCW stating these Court facilities required a drop box with the guard, and the facility was responsible for your firearm in the event is was lost or stolen, and that ingress and egress was not to be restricted to common areas such as going to the HEAD?

    Thanks in advance!


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    Firearms may only be restricted in the *secured* areas of the courthouse and whatnot. Unfortunately, I don't think there's a definition of what a secured area is. Common sense to me would be everything beyond the metal detectors.

    But most of the time they just put the signs right on the front doors, it seems.

    There was a thread a while back about this same issue at the Lewis County Sheriff's office/courthouse. Long story short, they're installing lockboxes now, after an OC'er set 'em straight (but not before harassing him). The no weapons signs are on the second set of double doors, so I guess you'd have to stay in the entryway and knock...?

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    I think RCW 9.41.300(1)(b) should answer your question. I'm not familiar with all counties' procedures, but I do know the Kitsap County courthouse in Port Orchard has a security desk at the front door. So the whole facility is gun-free under this section. Firearms can be checked with the deputy at the desk.

    (b) Those areas in any building which are used in connection with court proceedings, including courtrooms, jury rooms, judge's chambers, offices and areas used to conduct court business, waiting areas, and corridors adjacent to areas used in connection with court proceedings. The restricted areas do not include common areas of ingress and egress to the building that is used in connection with court proceedings, when it is possible to protect court areas without restricting ingress and egress to the building. The restricted areas shall be the minimum necessary to fulfill the objective of this subsection (1)(b).


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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    Richard6218 wrote:
    I think RCW 9.41.300(1)(b) should answer your question. I'm not familiar with all counties' procedures, but I do know the Kitsap County courthouse in Port Orchard has a security desk at the front door. So the whole facility is gun-free under this section. Firearms can be checked with the deputy at the desk.

    (b) Those areas in any building which are used in connection with court proceedings, including courtrooms, jury rooms, judge's chambers, offices and areas used to conduct court business, waiting areas, and corridors adjacent to areas used in connection with court proceedings. The restricted areas do not include common areas of ingress and egress to the building that is used in connection with court proceedings, when it is possible to protect court areas without restricting ingress and egress to the building. The restricted areas shall be the minimum necessary to fulfill the objective of this subsection (1)(b).
    Then if Joe normal was walking by and all the sudden had to use the head or risk having a mess in his tightie-whitiesthey should allow him the proceed. Assuming the ingress/egress to head isn’t in a secure area near a court room, jury room, Judges Chamber and so on? And the lock box attended by Deputies, are they supposed to have one in order with state law?
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    jbone wrote:
    Richard6218 wrote:
    I think RCW 9.41.300(1)(b) should answer your question. I'm not familiar with all counties' procedures, but I do know the Kitsap County courthouse in Port Orchard has a security desk at the front door. So the whole facility is gun-free under this section. Firearms can be checked with the deputy at the desk.

    (b) Those areas in any building which are used in connection with court proceedings, including courtrooms, jury rooms, judge's chambers, offices and areas used to conduct court business, waiting areas, and corridors adjacent to areas used in connection with court proceedings. The restricted areas do not include common areas of ingress and egress to the building that is used in connection with court proceedings, when it is possible to protect court areas without restricting ingress and egress to the building. The restricted areas shall be the minimum necessary to fulfill the objective of this subsection (1)(b).
    Then if Joe normal was walking by and all the sudden had to use the head or risk having a mess in his tightie-whitiesthey should allow him the proceed. Assuming the ingress/egress to head isn’t in a secure area near a court room, jury room, Judges Chamber and so on? And the lock box attended by Deputies, are they supposed to have one in order with state law?
    Either a lockbox or a designated official to receive firearms for safekeeping. And yes they are liable for your firearm if damage or theft results due to negligence with either storage method.

    Also keep in mind that they are required to post that firearms are restricted in the secured areas with a notice at each entrance.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    The problem with a lot of Courthouses in Washington is that they were never designed to secure only selected areas. Too many corridors and entrances to the Courtrooms. The "waiting areas" around the courtrooms are often shared by other office entrances. The only practical way to secure these areas is to install security checkpoints at the front door and restrict access at all others.

    Until someone takes the "Authorities" to court on their failing to follow State Law, nothing will change.
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    amlevin wrote:
    The problem with a lot of Courthouses in Washington is that they were never designed to secure only selected areas. Too many corridors and entrances to the Courtrooms. The "waiting areas" around the courtrooms are often shared by other office entrances. The only practical way to secure these areas is to install security checkpoints at the front door and restrict access at all others.

    Until someone takes the "Authorities" to court on their failing to follow State Law, nothing will change.
    To add to that most people are not even aware what they are required to do by state law.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    Well since I live in Mt. Vernon I have been in the Moller building several times.

    When you get in the door there is a small lobby. In the middle of it is a metal detector and two security guards. The jail and courts are up stairs or elevator past detector. On the right side of the lobby is the Sheriff Office. It too is secure you have to be buzzed in.

    The restrooms also are past the detector.

    After hours you cannot even get in that building without being buzzed in.

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    ghosthunter wrote:
    Well since I live in Mt. Vernon I have been in the Moller building several times.

    When you get in the door there is a small lobby. In the middle of it is a metal detector and two security guards. The jail and courts are up stairs or elevator past detector. On the right side of the lobby is the Sheriff Office. It too is secure you have to be buzzed in.

    The restrooms also are past the detector.

    After hours you cannot even get in that building without being buzzed in.
    Did you happen to ask aboutgun check-in on any of your visits.
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    Regular Member ghosthunter's Avatar
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    I did not. I have not been in there in about a year.If I get a chance I might pose the question. Though I try to avoid that place. If you are going in there you have some legal problem or know somebody who does.

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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    ghosthunter wrote:
    I did not. I have not been in there in about a year.If I get a chance I might pose the question. Though I try to avoid that place. If you are going in there you have some legal problem or know somebody who does.
    No I haven’t been there either, have no business there to conduct.Not sure I would be the right person to pose the question or put to the test. I'm still new to OC and really don't all the skill sets and knowledge base to tackle the big fish.

    Hopefully some of the more experienced movement folks can look into this and bring change through their intervention. I wouldn’t know were to start!


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    Lonnie would be the one to talk to. He's set the Lynnwood Courthouse/Police station straight on lockboxes and would likely be able to either just tell them that they need to get in-line with state law or to have someone at Lynnwood give the folks in Mt. Vernon a "heads-up".
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    Regular Member ghosthunter's Avatar
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    Great idea ,bring in the big gun. Here Lonnie Lonnie we have another city for youto bite in the ass. Need a address or phone number? I am here to help.

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    jbone wrote:
    No I haven’t been there either, have no business there to conduct.Not sure I would be the right person to pose the question or put to the test. I'm still new to OC and really don't all the skill sets and knowledge base to tackle the big fish.

    Hopefully some of the more experienced movement folks can look into this and bring change through their intervention. I wouldn’t know were to start!
    I did it in Blaine. We now have someone who checks weapons. Take this info to the courthouse and ask to speak to the person in charge. I went straight to the City Manager since Blaine is a small town.

    RCW 9.41.300

    In addition, the local legislative authority shall provide either a stationary locked box sufficient in size for pistols and key to a weapon owner for weapon storage, or shall designate an official to receive weapons for safekeeping, during the owner's visit to restricted areas of the building.
    You can look up and print the whole thing at http://apps.leg.wa.gov/RCW/default.aspx?cite=9.41.300

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    Hey jbone, if you want to team on this one, it's been in my sights. I know they not in compliance with state law. I contemplated heading in the door OC, and passing a pamplet, but think they may hit the panic button. You shoulda seen them when I showed up with a pocket knife, wanting to leave it there while I went into the secure area!
    I think some letter work might get them to comply with state law. If we can do that, I might just make a point of needing to use the can anytime I walk by, which might be more often all the time.... :celebrate
    PM me if you want to stir some lackadasical gub'mint types....



    jbone wrote:
    In need of further education please!

    As I passed by the Larry E. Moller Public Safety Building in Mount Vernon, WA I noticed a sign posted stating “firearms are prohibited in this building” This building houses the Sheriffs Office, Jail& District Court, across the street is the Superior Court Building. I called to ask if there were drop boxes at either of the court building entrances to check in a firearm. I was told no, only LE was authorized to carry past the front door.

    I though there was an RCW stating these Court facilities required a drop box with the guard, and the facility was responsible for your firearm in the event is was lost or stolen, and that ingress and egress was not to be restricted to common areas such as going to the HEAD?

    Thanks in advance!


  16. #16
    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    ghosthunter wrote:
    Great idea ,bring in the big gun. Here Lonnie Lonnie we have another city for youto bite in the ass. Need a address or phone number? I am here to help.
    http://www.skagitcounty.net/Faciliti...csafetypic.htm

    http://www.skagitcounty.net/Faciliti...uperiorpic.htm

    http://www.skagitcounty.net/Common/a...amp;p=main.htm

    Here's the address to both buildings and a link with phone number.


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    jbone, I would strongly recommend that you try this yourself rather than getting Lonnie in yet. There is really no downside to talking or communicating with them yourself at this point. Bring Lonnie in if they are recalcitrant. It may be easy. You gain the experience and they get to have a policy chat with someone from their local community rather than a hired gun from outside. (PS I know you aren't hired Lonnie)

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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    heresolong wrote:
    hired gun from outside
    But that's how they got it done in the Old West. Kidding...

    I'll draft a letter and have the professionals proof it (my grammar sucks) Maybe Hammer is good at that. We can hand deliver or email which ever is preferred. I am new at this, still Active duty until I retire next year, so need to keep a low profile for a bit longer. (Wife is cool now with me CCW, but still freaks when I OC) I have that to contend with, still working it!

    Who in the county government seat would be best suited for addressing this letterto?




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  19. #19
    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    Hammer wrote:
    Hey jbone, if you want to team on this one, it's been in my sights. I know they not in compliance with state law. I contemplated heading in the door OC, and passing a pamplet, but think they may hit the panic button. You shoulda seen them when I showed up with a pocket knife, wanting to leave it there while I went into the secure area!
    I think some letter work might get them to comply with state law. If we can do that, I might just make a point of needing to use the can anytime I walk by, which might be more often all the time.... :celebrate
    PM me if you want to stir some lackadasical gub'mint types....
    Hammer, sent you a PM with an extremly rough letter.
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    ghosthunter wrote:
    I did not. I have not been in there in about a year.If I get a chance I might pose the question. Though I try to avoid that place. If you are going in there you have some legal problem or know somebody who does.
    Not necessarily. I had to go to the Sheriff's office in the Moller building to file my CPL application.


    Anyway, I'm interested to see how this goes, since I have jury duty in the Superior Court building at the end of this month. I think I'll give them a call and ask about it. I'll let them know that I always carry, and that I'm wondering if they have the appropriate facilities for checking my firearm as required by state law. After all, I wouldn't very well be able to discharge my duties as a juror if they won't let me into the building.

    Not to mention, they can't very well deny jurors the right to self-defense. What if I help convict a hardened criminal, and his goons are waiting outside the courthouse?

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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    Fired off the letter today, we'llsee how it’s received by the official parties.
    Im proudly straight. I'm free to not support Legalization, GLBT, Illegal Aliens, or the Islamization of America.

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    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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  23. #23
    Regular Member jbone's Avatar
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    Good News

    UPDATE HOT OFF THE PRESS

    I just received this email from Mr. Reilly.

    Mr. Xxxx,

    A couple of days ago I reviewed a proposed change in the procedure for the Court Security Deputies which will require them to report to either of the two County courthouses in response to being summoned for the purpose of checking into lock boxes privately-owned firearms of those who wish to enter the court buildings to conduct business. This is a positive step toward bringing the courts into compliance with State law.

    I expect that this new system will be implemented in the near future.

    Paul Reilly

    WSBA # 10709

    Civil Department

    Skagit County Prosecuting

    Attorney's Office
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