Three dead in Berrien County Courthouse shooting
Multiple shots were fired at the Berrien County Courthouse Monday afternoon. Three people are dead.
The shooting happened around 2:30 p.m.
Victims, shooter identified
The two bailiffs who were killed have been identified as Ron Kienzle, 63, and Joe Zangaro, 61.
Kienzle has worked with the Berrien County Trial Court since 2005. Before that he worked with the Benton Township Police.
Zangaro was the head of courthouse security. He retired from the Michigan State Police.
The deputy who was injured has been identified as 41-year-old James Atterberry. The civilian who was wounded has been identified as Kenya Ellis of Benton Harbor.
Atterberry, 41, has been with the sheriff's department since 1998.
Atterberry and Ellis are both in stable condition at the hospital.
The shooter has been identified as 44-year-old Larry Gordon. He was in court on several felony charges.
Sheriff gives details of shooting
Berrien County Sheriff Paul Bailey held a press conference at 6 p.m. and at 9 p.m. to update the public on the shooting.
According to Sheriff Bailey, Gordon was being taken from a holding cell on the third floor to a courtroom by a deputy and a bailiff.
A fight occurred with the inmate on the way to the courtroom and the inmate disarmed the officer.
Gordon exchanged gunfire with the deputy and shot and killed the two bailiffs.
He then went into the court area and took hostages, Bailey said.
When Gordon tried to leave through another door, two bailiffs shot and killed Gordon.
Bailey said it all happened within about five minutes.
The Michigan State Police Crime Lab will process the scene.
After the scene is processed, the bodies will be taken to Grand Rapids for autopsy.
Bailey said he lost friends in the shooting and both bailiffs have been in law enforcement for a long time.
"Our hearts are torn apart. They were my friends," said Bailey.
Governor Rick Snyder attended the 6 p.m. press conference. Snyder said everyone in Michigan should pray for the families of the victims and should support all of our law enforcement officers.
"Put your thoughts and prayers out for the families who lost law enforcement officials," Snyder said.
He said he wanted to come to Berrien County to show his support for the community and our law enforcement officers.
The courthouse will be closed on Tuesday.
Excerpts from scanner traffic, via Broadcastify:
JUST LETTING YOU KNOW, WE HAVE REPORTS OF SHOTS FIRED AT THE COURTHOUSE
802 BERRIEN FIRE AT THE COURTHOUSE – MAN ON THE SECOND FLOOR WITH A GUN HE’S GOT HOSTAGES
BERRIEN NO SHOTS FIRED YET, WE HAVE HIM CORNERED ON THE SECOND FLOOR – HE HAS A GUN WITH A HOSTAGE
SHOTS FIRED! SHOTS FIRED! ONE DOWN!
OFFICER DOWN! OFFICER DOWN! – CLEAR OFFICER DOWN
SOUNDS LIKE WE’VE GOT MORE VICTIMS, WE HAVE MORE UNITS HEADING THAT WAY
THIRD FLOOR, COME OFF THE ELEVATOR, YOU NEED TO COME RIGHT OFF, WE HAVE AN OFFICER DOWN THERE – AND THEN COME TO THE RIGHT, WE’VE GOT ANOTHER ONE THERE
THIRD FLOOR JUST OFF THE ELEVATOR, CPR IN PROGRESS
WE’RE DOING C-P-R ON TWO RIGHT NOW AND WE’RE GONNA PROBABLY NEED TWO OR THREE AMBULANCES
SHOOTER IS DOWN, SHOOTER IS DOWN
WE’RE DOING C-P-R ON THE SHOOTER AND C-P-R ON THE OFFICER DOWN