Jackson County Supervisor to Receive National Recognition for Tackling a Gunman.

Published: Mar. 23, 2016 at 5:42 PM CDT
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A Jackson County supervisor is receiving national recognition for risking his life when a gunman opened fire in the Jackson County Courthouse.

The Carnegie Hero Fund Commission announced Wednesday it's awarding Larry “Buck” Koos the Carnegie Medal. He's one of 24 civilian recipients in the United States and Canada.

In September 2014, Gus Glaser pulled a gun out of a briefcase and fired shots at county employees.

That's when Koos jumped up to tackle Glaser. During that struggle, the gun fired again, killing Glaser.

“I am a farm boy doing this job. And I love this job,” said Koos.

Koos says he’s humbled and proud to receive the award. But he says the thing he's most proud of is what he and the other supervisors have been able to do to improve security in the county court house since that scary September day.

For example, in 2014 there were 6 public doors to get in and out of the building. Now 3 of the doors are locked from the outside and will sound an alarm if used from the inside.

The county has also since upgraded its emergency alert system. There used to be a panic button available to a few county employees. Now, several more employees can use their computers to engage the emergency alert system. That will immediately notify law enforcement to respond to any part of the building.

Before the shooting, security guards where only in the courthouse when a high profile criminal trial was going on. Now, whenever a judge is in the building, there is also an armed deputy from the Sheriff's office.

Koos says he'll accept the award on behalf of everyone who was in the room that day. He says he just happened to be the one who had the vantage point of being able to tackle the gunman.

"I have a real problem with the word hero. I still do. I reserve that word for sheriff’s deputies, police, fire fighters and military. Because they do that thing and then get up the next day and do it again. I did it once," said Koos.

Koos says the supervisors set aside $100,000 in next year's budget for court house security upgrades.

Some of that will be used to purchase a new security camera system. It will also help pay the salary of a full time armed deputy who'll patrol the courthouse at all times.