Thursday, September 15, 2011

Man fires assault rifle in Arkansas courthouse

48-year-old James Palmer of Van Buren, Arkansas walked into the Crawford County courthouse Tuesday wearing a long trench coat, despite the simmering temperature. He asked to speak to Circuit Judge Gary Cottrell and when he was told the judge wasn't in he took a gun from under his coat and started firing. He wounded the judge's secretary in the leg as she was fleeing. He then fired at least 70 rounds from an assault rifle and three semi-automatic handguns as employees hid under desks and behind doors. Palmer left the courthouse and exchanged gunfire with police. He was shot and died of his injuries.
Palmer had no criminal history and had a concealed weapons permit. The motive behind the shootings was unclear, but police believe Judge Cottrell handled Palmer's divorce and child custody proceedings in 2008. "This guy came heavily armed. He came here for a mission," said Sheriff Ron Brown. "When all the pieces are put together in this case the public will see, this man came to die on the Crawford County Courthouse lawn. He was going to take as many people as he could with him."


  1. The article doesn't specify what kind of assault rifle and if it was modified to fully-automatic. Any further information?

  2. I've read every news story you linked and none say anything about the man having a concealed weapons permit. Is this something you just made up?

  3. Wow, what a question.
    Reread the second linked story -

    "Arkansas State Police spokesman Bill Sadler said authorities believe Palmer, who had no criminal history and was licensed to carry concealed weapons, acted alone."

  4. So why do you answer my question but not any of the others asked of you?