Devon

Judge's lock picker query after Exeter court door jams

Exeter Crown Court
Image caption The court building in Exeter opened in 2004

A Devon judge said he was surprised there were no lock pickers in court after the door to the dock in his courtroom jammed shut.

Proceedings at Exeter Crown Court were suspended while security staff tried to open the glass door of the dock.

Defendants on bail had to stand or sit in the well of the court because they could not access the secure area.

Seventeen people were listed to appear before Judge Graham Cottle, who said a picker could have had extra credit.

Judge Cottle said: "I'm very surprised that particularly on a Friday morning there is nobody in the building who can pick a lock.

"I may be able to give credit for something other than a guilty plea."

The crown court building, in Southernhay Gardens, was opened in 2004.

It is hoped the lock will be repaired next week.

Court managers have not been available for comment.

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