NSW Police soon allowed to wear guns in courthouses after increased terror threat

Police will be permitted to carry guns in court. Photo: Joe ArmaoPolice will soon be allowed to take their guns into courthouses under changes expected to be announced by the state government.

Officers were previously prohibited from wearing or carrying their firearms into court buildings under a directive from NSW’s Chief Magistrate, Graeme Henson.

But under the current terror threat, officers will be able to arm themselves with their full appointment at all times.

The Police Association of NSW has been fighting for the changes for their members to be able to wear and  carry their firearms in court since September last year.

The announcement of the new protocol will soon be made by NSW Attorney-General Gabrielle Upton and Police Minister Troy Grant but had not been signed off on Wednesday night, a spokeswoman said.

“Negotiations are well under way and an announcement will be made when they are complete,” she said.

In May this year, the association’s president, Scott Weber, argued many members were concerned for their safety following a number of terror-related threats and incidents in Sydney and Melbourne.

“We have seen terrorism related offences in Sydney, current heightened security warnings and subsequent direction for police to carry their appointments due to escalating threats,” Mr Weber said.

“Recent events in Victoria involving a direct threat against police officers have meant the risk for police is at the highest levels and all reasonable steps must be taken to alleviate risk.”

He said judges, magistrates and court officials could not always control what happened in the “pressure cooker” environment of court houses.

“Some members of the judiciary must be stuck in the past,” he said. “Tradition does not dictate no weapons in the Local Court.  It is an archaic system from higher courts and times have changed.  When these traditions developed, there were no credit card knives, no ceramic edged weapons, no 3D printed edged weapons or firearms.”

Comments are closed.

Post Navigation