Security Poor at Nearly Half of Federal Courts, Watchdog Finds


Security is the top concern at nearly half of federal courthouses, due partly to building designs that allow judges, jurors, criminal defendants, and litigants to share hallways and other common areas, a congressional watchdog said.

In an analysis of 2020 data, the U.S. Government Accountability Office found 44% of federal court facilities had poor security. That finding was part of a broader review of the judiciary’s practices for assessing courthouse needs, which is how it determines construction priorities.

The GAO report, published Jan. 5, concluded that the judiciary could improve its methodology for determining which projects are most urgent and …



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