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Two Bailiffs, Jail Inmate Dead In Shooting At Michigan Courthouse

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Three people were fatally shot in a courthouse shooting rampage Monday afternoon in St. Joseph, Michigan.

Two court bailiffs and one inmate are dead and two others, including a sheriff's deputy, were injured, according to Berrien County Sheriff Paul Bailey.

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Police secure the scene outside the courthouse in St. Joseph, Mich. (Credit: Mark Parren)


"We have broken hearts today for what happened at the courthouse," Bailey told reporters at a Monday evening news conference.

The inmate -- 45-year-old Larry D. Gordon -- was being taken out of a holding cell to be taken into a courtroom when he began struggling with a deputy and took the officer's weapon, the sheriff said. Gordon shot the deputy, wounding him, and then fatally shot the two bailiffs.

The inmate was then "taken down" by two other deputies, Bailey said.

The two court officers who were killed were identified as Joe Zangaro, 61, head of courthouse security, and 63-year-old Ron Kienzle, an Army veteran. Both had been police officers before retiring.

The injured deputy, 41, was in intensive care but was recovering after surgery. A civilian woman was injured in the arm, Sheriff Bailey said.

Gordon had been detained at the jail on "numerous felony charges," Bailey said. He was not handcuffed at the time of the incident.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder appealed for support. The shooting happened around 1:30 Chicago time.

The courthouse will be closed Tuesday as an investigation continues.

Courthouse Shooting
Police respond to a shooting at the St. Joseph, Mich., courthouse. (Credit: Mark Parren)

A woman who works inside the courthouse called her husband after the shots rang out and told him she was hiding in the bathroom and asked him to call 911, CBS 2's Mai Martinez reports.

Dozens of police cars and officers with high-powered rifles converged on the scene.

St. Joseph is located on Lake Michigan about two hours from Chicago.

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