Courthouse Shooter Had |Long Criminal History

     (CN) – Larry Darnell Gordon, the prisoner who killed two bailiffs and wounded two other persons at the Berrien County Courthouse on July 11, had a long criminal history, according to court documents.
     Gordon was handcuffed and being removed from a third floor courtroom, shortly after 2 p.m. on July 11 when he managed to grab a deputy sheriff’s gun.
     In the pandemonium that followed, Gordon killed the two court bailiffs and briefly held eight hostages.
     During the melee, he also wounded the deputy sheriff and a bystander. Responding officers then shot and killed Gordon.
     Although Berrien County Sheriff Paul Bailey reported that Gordon was non-combative and fairly cooperative while in custody, he nevertheless had a long criminal history that included two federal convictions for possession of a pipe bomb, as well as convictions for possession of a handgun, larceny, and fleeing and eluding authorities.
     Gordon had served time in federal and state prisons.
     In April, police went to Gordon’s home in Coloma, Mich., to investigate charges of domestic violence and found a 17-year-old girl in a backyard shed on the property.
     Police allege that Gordon, 44, had been holding the girl against her will, giving her methamphetamine in exchange for sex, and assaulting her with weapons and strangulation. Allegedly, Gordon also recorded their sexual activity.
     Following Gordon’s April arrest, police charged him with five counts of sexual conduct in the first degree, kidnapping, three counts of producing child sexually-abusive material, possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver, several assault counts, plus resisting law enforcement.
     Had Gordon been convicted on these charges, he could have been sentenced to anywhere from 18 to 62 years in prison.
     In addition to his criminal activities, Gordon was a regular classroom volunteer at his daughter’s elementary school in Watervliet, Mich.
     When questioned by Grand Rapids ABC-affiliate WZZM TV, Watervliet Superintendent Kevin Schooley said that background checks on Gordon apparently didn’t turn up any violent crimes.
     The school principal explained that classroom volunteers are not fingerprinted.
     In a three-page, handwritten letter found in Gordon’s cell after the shootings, Gordon told his ex-wife that he had deep regret for “all the stuff” he put his family through, but denied the charges against him. Gordon repeatedly scribbled “I’m sorry” in the upper and lower margins.
     “I probably won’t ever see you again,” Gordon wrote, “but I guess I’ll die trying.” “They want to send me away for the rest of my life. That’s not living. I’m not going to do it.”

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