A judge has been found dead from a gunshot wound to the head in his chambers at a courthouse in Texas.
The body of Tom Greenwell, 57, was discovered by cleaners at 7pm last night – two hours after the court closed – on the eighth storey of the Nueces County Courthouse, in Corpus Christi, south Texas.
Police initially raced to the scene believing they were hunting for an active shooter, but were seen soon after calmly leaving the courthouse and are now believed to be treating the death as a suicide.
Judges who have concealed handgun licenses are allowed to bring registered firearms with them to the courthouse.
Lawyers, judges, and some journalists who have special identification badges typically aren’t required to pass through the security checkpoint which includes metal detectors and guards.
Greenwell took over the 319th district court in 2001, and became the first Republican in Nueces County to win a county-wide office.
He was reelected in 2006 and ran unopposed in 2010. He was serving his third term.
In November, he lost a bid for the 13th Court of Appeals Judge for Place 2 to attorney Nora Longoria, a Democrat.