Bryan County courthouse beefing up security

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DURANT,OK---Recent threats at the Bryan County courthouse have led county commissioners to install new security systems.

Bryan County Commissioner Monty Montgomery says during a trial in the late 1990's, a man actually took out a switch blade in the courtroom and slit his wrist.

"We just want to take the weapons out of people's hands that are involved in these kind of situations." said Montgomery.

But what concerns Montgomery and other county leaders isn't just suspects hurting themselves.

"There are many issues that take place in a courtroom that as most people know that don't occur in most public buildings." said Montgomery.

With courthouse shootings across the country in the past few years, he says the violence is becoming too commonplace, and Bryan County has to step up their safety measures.

Billy Olenick has worked in courthouse maintenance for the last six years.

Now he's working with the commissioners to install a new security scanner and metal detector in the East entryway.

"The way it's set up right now you could bring two people in and one of them stand over there and one of them go upstairs and start shooting everybody, and the guy standing by this wall could shoot anyone who comes through that door." said Olenick.

Commissioners also want to station a deputy at the courthouse full time.

"I think it's real important you know, because it's not only for my sake, it's for the judges, and everybody that's here." said Olenick.

Montgomery says they hope these measures better protect everyone inside.

"The security that we're attempting to provide at our courthouse, is an effort to keep the weapons out of the hands of the people that are involved in these passionate issues." said Montgomery.

"I don't want anybody to get hurt, and that's what it's going to come down to." said Olenick.

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