Judicial Security: Comparison of Legislation in the 110th Congress [Updated January 23, 2008]   [open pdf - 128KB]

"The 2005 murders of the husband and mother of United States District Judge Joan Lefkow by a disgruntled litigant and the murders of Judge Rowland Barton, his court reporter, a deputy sheriff, and a federal officer in Atlanta, Georgia, focused national attention on the need for increased court security. Data from the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS), Pennsylvania's survey of judicial safety, and the New York Office of Court Administration demonstrate that judges are the targets of threats and other aggressive actions. In addition, congressional testimony and a report by the Department of Justice's (DOJ's) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) raise questions about the abilities of the USMS to protect the federal judiciary. The USMS is the primary agency responsible for the security of the federal judiciary. According to a March 2004 OIG report, USMS routinely failed to assess the threats against federal judges in a timely manner and it has limited ability to collect and share intelligence on threats to the judiciary to appropriate entities. The concerns noted by the OIG may be due, in part, to funding and staffing issues highlighted in recent congressional testimony [...] This report discusses the state of judicial security in the United States and the legislation introduced in the 110th Congress that would enhance judicial security. This report will be updated as needed."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RL33473
Public Domain
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