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Basement Courtroom Back In Business After 15 Years

Oklahoma County

Court is back in session in the basement of the Oklahoma County Detention Center in a courtroom that hasn't been used in nearly 15 years.

The courtroom was originally built in 1999 for the trial of Oklahoma City Bombing conspirator Terry Nichols. It's now being used by Oklahoma County District Judge Donald Easter. Easter hears cases of inmates who cannot be released until they pay what is owed to the court, or agree to a payment plan.

Last fall the Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office approached Easter about holding court in the basement to help with the burden of transporting 20 to 30 inmates back and forth from the jail to the Oklahoma County Courthouse. Sheriff John Whetsel says the reopening benefits both the Sheriff's Office and taxpayers in Oklahoma County.

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