The disagreement over a judge’s controversial courtroom gun ban nearly came to a head Monday after two Omaha police officers refused to surrender their weapons in order to testify in court. Instead of forcing the issue, Douglas County prosecutors did not call the officers to testify in a convenience store robbery case because they knew the officers would violate Judge James Gleason’s courtroom gun ban—risking jail time in the process.
According to Omaha Police Sgt. John Wells, head of the Omaha police union, the judge’s order puts officers at risk and was completely unnecessary. “Both of the officers were not going to disarm under any circumstances,” he said. To resolve the issue, Douglas County’s district judges voted Tuesday to pass a proposed amendment to court rules to leave all security decisions throughout the courthouse up to the Douglas County sheriff. Nebraska’s high court is expected to review the proposed new rule.