Threat Towards Smith County Courthouse - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Threat Towards Smith County Courthouse

Some terrifying moments for some East Texas drivers this morning, when police pull their guns during a traffic stop. It happened a block from Tyler's downtown square at Broadway and Locust Street.  Authorities pulled the man over for a traffic violation but had been tipped off that he might be taking a gun to the courthouse.

"I came through the intersection and saw that the officers had an individual stopped and had their guns drawn so they were removing him at gun point," says District Attorney Matt Bingham.

Police had been looking for 34 year old Jason Allen Gruetzner because they believed he might be taking a gun to the Smith County Courthouse.

"We had received information that Mr. Gruetzner had made threats about possible taking a weapon into Judge Clark's courtroom," says Officer Don Martin, Tyler Police Department.

Authorities knew he had a child custody case before Judge Clark.

"They did believe the information was credible to the story because he did try to purchase a gun.  They located him before he got the courthouse and if he had a weapon on him we possible could have stopped a possible shooting today," says Officer Martin.

Gruetzner's van was searched for a weapon, but they did not find a weapon.

"They went into action to make sure that we didn't have another courthouse shooting like we did in the past," says Officer Martin.

"Everybody that works in the courthouse and the in community still remembers February 23rd, with what David Arroyo did, so I think that everybody is on high alert.  It's very scary and we want to make sure that the courthouse is safe," says Bingham.

Gruetzner was escorted to the courthouse and Judge Clark proceeded with the case.

"The court is always threatened when you are the judge that takes people's children away.  Everybody that comes in here is mad so it's part of the job that you live with," says Judge Clark.

After the court hearing was over, Gruetzner left the courthouse in a taxi.

We did check with the Tyler Police Department and at this point no charges have been filed against Gruetzner.

Karolyn Davis, reporting.


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