Monday, April 26, 2021

President Judge Koury Orders ALL Preliminary Hearings for Jailed Defendants at Courthouse

President Judge Michael J Koury, Jr., has ordered the establishment of a central court to conduct preliminary hearings for jailed Defendants. In an Opinion and Order issued on Friday, Judge Koury concludes these hearings will be more efficient, secure and cost-effective if held at the courthouse.

The County will save considerable sums currently being spent for constables to transport jailed Defendants to Magisterial District Judge Offices throughout the county. In addition to creating an escape opportunity, these front line offices have little or no security to protect staffers. Holding these hearings at the courthouse will be far more secure. 

District Attorney Terry Houck praised Judge Koury's decision, noting this system has worked well in Lehigh and other counties. His sole concern is that police officers who testify at these hearings should be allowed to carry their weapon, as they do in other counties. He said he is currently discussing that topic with the courts. 

He noted that police officers "have a target on their backs when they don't have a gun in their holster." 

Central Court in Northampto... by BernieOHare

12 comments:

peterjcochran said...

I’ve thought this for years. Disarming a police officer in the court house or any other facility makes that facility less safe by that action. Where did this policy develop?

Bernie O'Hare said...

It is state law. I see no problem with it bc the deputies are armed. But given the DA's concern and the practice followed in other counties, there probably are probably exceptions. The DA and PJ are both brilliant and will figure it out.

Anonymous said...

If nobody has a gun, nobody gets shot right?

Newark New Jersey Police Dept did not have an officer fire his or her weapon in all of 2020, how is that?

Anonymous said...

Actually it is state law that a police officer CANNOT be disarmed. PA Crimes Code 5104

Anonymous said...

It’s about time they start a central court, running around is ridicules and costly. Let the fake mini judges (Magistrates) come to the court house with their little black robes one every few weeks and stop wasting money

Anonymous said...

I bet they still carried a gun. You seem to contradict yourself.

Anonymous said...

Just curious. How much does a county pay for jailed defendants to be taken to and from a jail for proceedings, etc. I'm sure there are many stipulations. Thank you.

peterjcochran said...

Anon 4: 46 - I my 20 some years as a State Constable , firearms qualified type. The judges are us busy with the knuckleheads that cause trouble. I have worked many offices in Northampton County. I have taken in felons, to parking violators. , a guy that escaped from our prison that went over the wall. Well I got them in my younger days. So your comments show you don’t know how this works. All defendants have to start at the District Court in this venue, Pennsylvania.

peterjcochran said...

In my humble opinion, I say ,a seasoned police officer has more exposure to hostile situations than our Sheriffs Deputies do. P
I also would submit the best shooter in NorCo court house is an Attorney that’s employed there. I won’t disclose him ,but he’s a great combatant,and I witnessed him hitting a business card at 25 yards , nobody from Sheriffs office can do that . I know ,I worked him over as new shooter. Issue is most cops are better shooters and could hammer somebody better tha n average sheriff deputy. Tack this to them
Bank.

Anonymous said...

annon7:05, you don't know what you are talking about. Take a seat gramps.

Anonymous said...

First off, you never took in anyone. You are and only ever were a taxi from prison to district Court. I'm sure your expert combatant friend was shooting with zero stress, no time and modified trigger. Really challenging I'm sure for target shooting not combat shooting. You know nothing about current Deputies abilities or the firearms training at the sheriffs department. Last deputy you claim to work with retired in 1982

Anonymous said...

Cost savings? Everyone but the DA and defendant have to travel to and from Easton. The mini judges, the defense attorney, the police officers, and the witnesses. Unless the crime happened in Easton, everyone else is being inconvenienced.