Courthouse violence unpredictable despite security

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Federal Courthouse employees evacuate as police investigate a shooting inside the Federal Courthouse, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Salt Lake City. The shooting has left at least one person injured, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney said. (AP Photo/The Deseret News, Hugh Carey) SALT LAKE TRIBUNE OUT; MAGS OUT

Federal Courthouse employees evacuate as police investigate a shooting inside the Federal Courthouse, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Salt Lake City. The shooting has left at least one person injured, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney said. (AP Photo/The Deseret News, Hugh Carey) SALT LAKE TRIBUNE OUT; MAGS OUT

This Feburary 2012 photo, provided by the Utah Department of Corrections, shows Siale Angilau. A U.S. marshal shot and critically wounded Angilau on Monday, April 21, 2014, in a new federal courthouse after he rushed the witness stand with a pen at his trial in Salt Lake City, authorities said. Angilau was one of 17 people named in a 29-count racketeering indictment filed in 2008 accusing gang members of conspiracy, assault, robbery and weapons offenses. (AP Photo/Utah Department of Corrections)

Police tape surrounds the Federal Courthouse Monday, April 21, 2014, in Salt Lake City. A U.S. marshal shot and critically wounded a defendant on Monday in a new federal courthouse after the man rushed the witness stand with a pen at his trial in Salt Lake City, authorities said. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Members of the FBI evidence response team enter the Federal Courthouse, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Salt Lake City. A U.S. marshal shot and critically wounded a defendant on Monday in a new federal courthouse after the man rushed the witness stand with a pen at his trial in Salt Lake City, authorities said. Defendant Siale Angilau was hospitalized with at least one chest wound, FBI spokesman Mark Dressen said. The witness wasn’t hurt. Angilau was one of 17 people named in a 29-count racketeering indictment filed in 2008 accusing gang members of conspiracy, assault, robbery and weapons offenses. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Mark Dressen, FBI assistant special agent in charge, talks to the media outside the Federal Courthouse, Monday, April 21, 2014, in Salt Lake City. A U.S. marshal shot and critically wounded a defendant on Monday in a new federal courthouse after the man rushed the witness stand with a pen at his trial in Salt Lake City, authorities said. (AP Photo/The Salt Lake Tribune, Steve Griffin) DESERET NEWS OUT; LOCAL TV OUT; MAGS OUT

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — When Utah’s new federal courthouse opened last week, it came with security improvements that are becoming standard around the country: separate entrances and elevators for judges, defendants and the public; bullet-resistant glass and paneling; and vehicle barricades to keep car bombs at bay.

Even the design of the courtrooms, with plenty of sunlight and space, can help calm witnesses or defendants in high-stress cases, some judges believe.

But nothing can prevent every violent courtroom outburst. Authorities said that when a 5-foot-11, 230-pound, pen-wielding defendant rushed a witness during his racketeering trial Monday, a more old-fashioned form of security left him dead: an armed U.S. marshal.

Siale Angilau, 25, was shot several times in front of stunned jurors, lawyers and courtroom watchers. He was one of 17 people named in a 2010 indictment accusing “Tongan Crip” gang members of assault, conspiracy, robbery and weapons offenses.

The unidentified witness, who was unhurt, had been testifying about gang initiation when Angilau charged him, said Perry Cardwell, who was in the courtroom. Cardwell was there to support his mother, Sandra Keyser, who was punched in the face during a holdup in 2002.

Shootings at federal courthouses are rare, though not unheard of, around the country.

Last year, a former police officer who told friends he was dying of cancer was killed by law enforcement after he sprayed bullets into a federal courthouse in West Virginia. In 2012, a man committed suicide at a federal courthouse in Alabama, and in 2010, a man started shooting in the lobby of the Las Vegas federal courthouse, killing a court security officer and wounding a deputy U.S. marshal. The gunman was killed in a shootout.

Shootings in courtrooms themselves are even less common, largely because metal detectors ensure armed spectators don’t reach them.

But defendants usually are not shackled when they appear at trial, absent extraordinary circumstances, making their outbursts unpredictable. Courts have held that it’s unfair to defendants for jurors to see them restrained. It’s unclear whether the U.S. Marshals Service, which provides security for judges and federal courthouses, had any unusual concerns about security in Angilau’s case.

Prosecutors say Angilau, also known by his street name “C-Down,” was a member of the Tongan Crips, a group of men of mostly Tongan descent that are aligned with a larger Crip culture in the Western United States. They have rivalries with “Blood” gangs and a gang of ex-members known as the “Tongan Crip Regulators,” court records show.

The last defendant in the case to stand trial, Angilau was accused of robbing convenience stores and assaulting clerks in Salt Lake City on five occasions from 2002 to 2007. A clerk was shot in the final robbery. He was also accused of assaulting a federal officer with a weapon on Aug. 11, 2007.

Angilau’s trial was among the first at the new $185 million federal courthouse in downtown Salt Lake City, next door to the century-old federal facility it replaced.

U.S. District Judge Tena Campbell declared a mistrial after the shooting, noting in her order that jurors were visibly shaken and upset. She issued a separate order extending the jurors’ term of service “until counseling is no longer needed.”

Angilau’s attorney, Michael Langford, declined to take questions as he left the courthouse.

Angilau was arrested in August 2007 for a probation violation and pleaded guilty a year later to obstruction of justice and failure to respond to a command of a police officer, court records show. He

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