Larry Darnell Gordon, 45, was being transported to a Berrien County court proceeding on July 11, 2016 when he overpowered a deputy, stole his gun and tried to take hostages during an escape attempt. Gordon fatally shot two bailiffs in the ensuing chaos and wounded a sheriff’s deputy and a nearby civilian before being gunned down by other court officers.
In a press conference attended by Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, Berrien County Sheriff Paul Bailey identified the slain bailiffs as Joseph Zangaro, 61, and Ronald Kienzle, 63, and said the injured deputy, 41-year-old James Atterberry, had undergone surgery and was “doing fine.” Bailey did not identify Gordon’s fourth victim, a woman who was shot in the arm, but said she was in stable condition.
Initially there were questions as to whether Gordon had been properly restrained while being transported, and Bailey confirmed that he was handcuffed in front of his body when he disarmed the deputy. “This is an unfortunate thing,” the sheriff said. “We move people every day.... Safety is the utmost and this is an unfortunate situation where this inmate, who wanted to break out, was able to overpower our deputy and get his weapon.”
The courthouse shooting drew national attention, coming just days after an ambush attack in Dallas, Texas that killed five police officers and injured nine other officers and two civilians. Governor Snyder, who said he attended the press conference to encourage citizens to support law enforcement, condemned the Berrien County shooting as an “awful act.”
Sources: New York Post, www.nydailynews.com, www.nbcnewyork.com
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