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More information released in deadly Berrien County Courthouse shooting

More information was released Tuesday morning in a shooting that unfolded at the Berrien County Courthouse Monday in St. Joseph, Michigan.

After further investigation from the crime scene techs, Sheriff Paul Bailey said they have learned that the suspect was handcuffed in the front.

During his transport, police say a fight broke out between the suspect - 45-year-old Larry Gordon - and Deputy James Atterbury, 41. Gordon was able to remove the deputy's weapon and began firing.

Police say Gordon, who was in court on domestic violence and criminal sexual conduct charges, shot and killed two deputies - 61-year-old Joseph Zangaro and 63-year-old Ronald Kienzle.

Atterbury was also injured, along with a civilian woman who has not been identified.

Atterbury is in stable condition.

"He's doing well," said Bailey.

The civilian's wounds were not life-threatening, say police.

Sheriff Bailey says there will be grief counseling for all employees and families of those affected.

The courthouse is closed Tuesday and Wednesday. It will reopen on Thursday and there will be extra deputies present.

The bodies of the two officers were escorted to Grand Rapids so that autopsies could be performed on Tuesday morning.

"People talk about us being a divided country," Bailey said during Tuesday's news conference. "We're not divided, we're strong."

Larry Gordon

Gordon's ex-wife told a Grand Rapids TV station she spoke with him Sunday and had no indication he was planning an attack.

Jessica Gordon says her ex-husand "got mixed up with the wrong people."

She says he was probably afraid of going to prison and wanted to "get home to our baby girl."

Vigil

There will be a vigil at 2 p.m. Tuesday at the courthouse.

The following release was issued Tuesday morning by the Berrien County Sheriff's Office:

On July 11, 2016 at approximately 2:15 p.m. there was an incident at the Berrien County Courthouse in which two court officers were shot and are deceased. The gunman was shot by other officers and is deceased.

The two court officers that were shot have been identified as Joseph Zangaro who was 61 years of age and Ronald Kienzle who was 63 years of age. Joe Zangoro was the Head of Courthouse Security and has been employed with the Berrien County Trial Court since May of 2004. Joe retired from the Michigan State Police as Post Commander of the Bridgman Post. Ron Kienzle was a Bailiff and has been employed with the Berrien County Trial Court since April of 2005. He retired as a Sergeant from the Benton Charter Township Police Department after serving in the United States Army. Both of these court officers were well respected amongst law enforcement and within the community.

The Deputy Sheriff that was shot in the arm is James Atterberry Jr. who is 41 years of age. He has worked for Berrien County since August 1998 and he joined the Sheriff's Office in July of 2002.

The suspect has been identified as Larry Darnell Gordon, White Male, who was 44 of age, a resident of the City of Coloma. Larry Gordon was currently an inmate of the Berrien County Jail awaiting court appearances on several charges.

The preliminary investigation reveals that Larry Darnell Gordon disarmed one of the officers who were escorting him to a court hearing inside of the Berrien County Courthouse. After shooting the officers Gordon briefly attempted to take hostages, while other Bailiff's and police officers in the courthouse engaged Gordon and he was shot and killed. The investigation is ongoing and in an effort to provide the most accurate information any other details regarding this incident will be released at a later date. We appreciate the assistance of the Berrien County Homicide Task Force, the Violent Crimes Task Force and the Michigan State Police Crime Lab.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the deceased and those injured in this tragic incident.

On July 11, 2016 at approximately 2:15 p.m. there was an incident at the Berrien County Courthouse in which two court officers were shot and are deceased. The gunman was shot by other officers and is deceased. A Deputy Sheriff and a civilian were also shot during the incident. The deputy and civilian sustained non-life threatening injuries and are currently being treated at an area hospital in stable condition.

The courthouse is secured and the scene is rendered safe. No further victims are involved.

The investigation into this incident is being handled by the Berrien County Homicide Task Force, the Berrien County Sheriff's Office, the Saint Joseph City Department of Public Safety, the Michigan State Police, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

No further information is available at this time and periodic press releases will be forth-coming, as more information is obtained.

Video from WSBT's Mark Parren on the scene:

Governor Rick Snyder sent the following tweets in response :


Congressman Fred Upton released the following statement on his website:

"What occurred today in my hometown breaks my heart. My thoughts are with our entire community - our friends and neighbors. This tragic event reminds us all too well that our law enforcement officers have their lives on the line every day not knowing what that day will bring. We have lost two very able public servants and we all grieve for them and their families. As we learn more about this horrific situation, one thing is clear: we must do better to prevent these types of tragedies from occurring."

Senator Dan Coats also tweeted out his feelings:

Senator John Proos said:

"I am deeply saddened to learn of the shooting today in my hometown of St. Joseph. My thoughts and prayers as well as those of my family are with the victims and all those affected by this tragedy.

"At the time of the incident, I was at my constituent service office just a block away from the courthouse. I can therefore attest to the professionalism and outright heroism of law enforcement agencies as well as first responders from all over Southwest Michigan. These men and women get up every day and put themselves in harm's way in order to serve and protect our community. Today, they were met with violence, and apparently, several have lost their lives.

"We must continue to stand together with our friends, family and neighbors who serve in law enforcement and as public servants in our local government. They make our community strong."

State Representative Al Pscholka:

On July 11, 2016 there was an incident at the Berrien County Courthouse in which two court officers were shot and are deceased. The gunman was shot by other officers and is deceased. Also injured in this incident were a Berrien County Sheriff's Deputy and a civilian. The deputy and civilian sustained non-life threatening injuries and are currently being treated at an area hospital in stable condition.

The courthouse is secured and the scene is rendered safe. No further victims are involved.

The investigation into this incident is being handled by the Berrien County Homicide Task Force, the Berrien County Sheriff's Office, the Saint Joseph City Department of Public Safety, the Michigan State Police, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

No further information is available at this time and periodic press releases will be forth-coming, as more information is obtained.

The next press conference is scheduled for 6:00 pm today at the corner of Ship and Court Street in the City of St. Joseph.

Senator Gary Peters:

"I'm deeply saddened by the tragic shootings at the Berrien County Courthouse in St. Joseph. I join my fellow Michiganders in grieving for all those affected by this senseless tragedy, including the two public servants who lost their lives. We are still awaiting more details of what happened during this heartbreaking event, and I will continue to monitor the situation as more information becomes available."

Senator Joe Donnely:


South Bend's own Mayor Pete Buttigieg also released a statement:



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