Shooting at Las Vegas Courthouse Leaves Two Dead, Including Shooter


I dearly hate to be the bearer of more negative news to kick off this new year. This one hits a bit closer to home, however. Just as natural disasters are capricious in nature and stop for no one, gun crime and violence marches on.

A man walked into a federal courthouse in Las Vegas and opened fire, killing a security guard and injuring a deputy marshal. The assailant committed the act with a shotgun that he hid underneath his clothes just after 8 a.m. Witnesses say “between 30 and 40 shots” were fired in total. The shooter was killed by police in the exchange.

The shooting took place at the Lloyd D. George Federal Courthouse. The courthouse holds the offices of Senators Harry Reid and John Ensign, neither of whom were present at the time.

Las Vegas, Nevada the site of a deadly courthouse shooting

In a statement released by U.S. Marshals Service Director John F. Clark, the on-duty officers are to be heralded as “heroes.” He also stated “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.”

According to CNN, the assailant is a former Las Vegas police officer. FBI spokesman Joseph Dickey said shortly after the shooting that the shooting isn’t correlated to a terrorist attack, and an investigation is underway to find a motive.

Interestingly enough, in a report published today just hours before the shooting by the Justice Department’s inspector general, threats against federal judges and prosecutors increased 12 percent in 2008 (1,278 reported.) That is more than double the amount reported in 2003 (592 reported.) Speculation coupled with this report would seem to hint at this particular crime being related to the threats, but a motive has yet to be settled on.

John Danz Jr is a serious writer with a penchant for poetry and building a foundation in every form of writing. He is motivated by a never-ending thirst for informed knowledge and the feeling of accomplishment that comes with every completed poem or story.

A drummer drawn to classic and modern rock/metal music, John is deeply interested in meteorology, psychology, sociology and philosophy. Weather has always fascinated him, he wants to know why people do what they do, understand the cultures of the world, reflect on great minds and gain a better understanding of this world and our place in it.