UPDATED 01-04-10: LAS VEGAS SHOOTING AT COURTHOUSE KILLS A GUARD, INJURES A MARSHAL…

Posted on January 4, 2010. Filed under: News And Politics... |

 

UPDATED:  Monday, January 4, 2010 11:11 PM (My original post follows my update)
 
More details are coming out in regarding this shooting.  The fallen officer, 72-year-old Stanley W. Cooper, was a 26-year veteran of the Las Vegas Metro Police Department before becoming a federal court security officer in 1994.  May he rest in peace.  The deputy marshal who was wounded and hospitalized is still not yet named.  The shooter,  66-year-old Johnny Lee Wicks who is a Las Vegas resident, was upset over a Social Security claim.  He filed a discrimination lawsuit against Social Security in 2008, alleging he was denied full benefits because of his race, according to court papers.  A federal judge ruled against him in September.  Read the Lawsuit filed by Johnny Wicks.
 
The building where the shooting took place also houses the local offices of Nevada Senators John Ensign and Harry Reid.  Neither senator was in the building at the time, although Ensign told reporters he went there upon hearing reports of the shootings.  More on this story…
 
 
QueenBee

 

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A gunman opened fire in a Las Vegas federal courthouse this morning, killing a court security officer and wounding a deputy U.S. marshal.  The suspect in the shooting was killed at the scene by employees of the U.S. Marshal Service.  My thoughts and prayers go out to the guard and his (or her) family at this time.  The gunman will have to answer to God for what he (or she) has done.  What disturbs me is the fact that if this can happen in Las Vegas where there is an ample amount of security, wait until those terrorists are tried in criminal court instead of a military tribunal.  There will be much more of this happening…
 
QueenBee
 
 

    

 

I’m posting the YouTube video by NickyFlips here that’s referenced in the story below…

QueenBee

 

Las Vegas Courthouse Shootout

 

Guard killed, marshal injured in Las Vegas courthouse shooting

(CNN) — Two federal personnel were shot, one fatally, Monday in the lobby of a federal courthouse building in Las Vegas, Nevada, federal officials said.

"A deputy U.S. marshal and court security officer were shot at the Lloyd D. George Federal Courthouse in Las Vegas this morning," said U.S. Marshals spokesman Jeff Carter.

"The gunman was shot by Marshals Service personnel and has been pronounced dead. The deputy U.S. Marshal is in stable condition at a local hospital. Unfortunately, the court security officer succumbed to his wounds and passed away."

The incident occurred about 8 a.m. PT, FBI Special Agent Joseph Dickey said.

Authorities were in the process of securing the building, Carter said.

"We do not know the motive for the shooting at this time, and the investigation into the shooting is still under way," he said.

No one else was in the lobby at the time of the incident, police spokeswoman Barbara Morgan said.

Nevada Sens. Harry Reid and John Ensign both have offices in the federal building. Ensign spokeswoman Jennifer Cooper said the senator was not there, although the staff was evacuated.

Reid, the Senate majority leader, issued a statement saying his thoughts were with the victims and their families.

"The law enforcement personnel who protect the courthouse put their lives at risk every day to keep the people who are inside safe and I greatly appreciate their service," the senator said.

U.S. Marshals Service director John F. Clark said in a statement, "I can receive no news more grim or sobering than word of a line-of-duty death or injury to our U.S. Marshals personnel. … Rest assured, the brave and immediate actions of these two individuals saved lives by stopping the threat of a reckless and callous gunman who had no regard for who or how many victims were struck down by his senseless actions. They are heroes."

Troy Saceal told CNN affiliate KNTV that he had just parked his car on the fourth floor of a garage nearby when he heard gunshots.

"I saw some people running out of the building and what looked like security," he said. "It was the marshals, and the whole firefight kind of opened up. It was just blast after blast with a gun."

Saceal said he saw a marshal shot at the corner of the building "and another marshal ran up and covered him up" as police officers began arriving at the scene.

"When the shots kind of subsided, I saw some officers run up and check on that marshal that was apparently hit," he said.

Over about two minutes, he said, he heard 30 to 40 shots.

"It was kind of surreal watching it because I didn’t realize what was going on at the time," he said. "By the time I kind of realized what was going on, I just saw people coming out of the building shooting toward the street." He said a building blocked his view of what they were shooting at.

Shortly after the incident, a video was posted on YouTube that appeared to capture the scene and the sound outside the courthouse during the shooting. At least 45 gunshots are heard on the video, with many in rapid succession. The video lasts a minute and 13 seconds.

"Shooting outside of a Las Vegas courthouse," a voice says. "Unbelievable."

The video was posted to YouTube by a user with the name NickyFlips, who wrote on the Web site that he had just exited the courthouse after receiving a jury summons.

"Hell of a morning for jury duty," the voice adds.

CNN’s Dana Bash, Lynn Lamanivong, Chuck Johnston, Sara Pratley and Carol Cratty contributed to this report.

 

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