Central Courthouse to ramp up security

Security at the county’s Central Courthouse is being increased in response to an expanded caseload and fears about gangs in the surrounding neighborhood, according to officials.

The San Mateo court, on the 800 block of North Humboldt Street, will spend about $222,000 to construct a new security checkpoint and add an X-ray machine in the coming months, officials said. The court, a branch of the county’s Superior Court that used to deal exclusively with traffic and small claims cases, began handling complex civil litigation cases earlier this year.

So-called complex litigation includes lawsuits involving large companies such as biotech firms, county Court Executive Officer John Fitton said. “Since we’ve got a full-service courtroom now, that was one reason for the increased security.”

The added funds to construct a secure checkpoint will enhance the safety for everyone who uses the facility, County Manager John Maltbiesaid in a report to supervisors.

The court also added a metal detector and more security personnel recently, Fitton said. Gang activity in the neighborhood is well-noted and was a consideration in asking for beefed-up security, Fitton said.

So far, there have been no major incidents of guns or knives being smuggled into county courthouses, and these precautions are meant to keep it that way, Fitton said.

The project should go to bid next month and be completed by September, Fitton said.

ecarpenter@examiner.comBay Area NewsLocal

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Union threatens legal action after Police Commission expands use-of-force policy

San Francisco’s police union is pursuing legal action after the Police Commission… Continue reading

Restorative art on the inside and out

Curator Ericka Scott organizes exhibition of works by prisoners

City Attorney seeks to recoup ‘illegal profits’ gained by Walter Wong through city contracts

San Francisco will seek to recover “illegal profits” gained by well-known permit… Continue reading

SF Police Commission votes to expand use-of-force policy

Decision to bypass union negotiations could set stage for litigation

Free Muni for Youth program expansion halted by SFMTA budget crisis

Low- and moderate-income kids can still travel for free

Most Read