Chapter 4: Courtrooms
The station's worksurface (a minimum of 24 inches or 600 mm deep x 60 inches or
1525 mm wide) must be at desk height. The station must be large enough to
accommodate a second staff person, who would be present during training or
periodic high-volume hearings. A corner or side worksurface of sufficient size must
be provided for a computer. The computer must be ergonomically placed without
obstructing essential sightlines. Provisions for a printer with sound isolation must
be provided in the courtroom, if needed. The front of the worksurface must have a
rail or barrier (four inches or 100 mm, minimum) around the top to prevent paper
and materials from falling to the floor. The deputy clerk workstation generally
includes a movable, swivel chair.
Storage is provided at the station for the following items:
Files: In trial courtrooms, the courtroom deputy clerk frequently handles
physical evidence, including files. The storage space must accommodate
both letter- and legal-sized files. At least two 20-inch-deep (500 mm) file
drawers must be provided.
Exhibits: In trial courtrooms, the courtroom deputy clerk frequently
handles exhibits. Exhibits can range from letter- and legal-sized documents
to large or bulky objects. Short-term storage of small objects may be
accommodated in secure, cabinet-type casework in or near the courtroom
deputy clerk station. An exhibits shelf must be built into the workstation.
This shelf must be at least 18 inches (450 mm) deep and 36 inches (925
mm) wide and adjustable to accommodate different sized exhibits.
Court recording machine and supplies: In some USBC courtrooms,
recording machines are located at the courtroom deputy clerk station.
Court recording machines vary greatly in size; however, storage for such
equipment must be lockable and conveniently located. Recording machines
can be built directly into the worksurface. Adequate space must be allowed
for wires at the back, side, or front of the storage area. The amount of
storage varies for recording supplies, depending upon the system used. In
general, vertical, lockable drawer storage for cassette tapes is preferred.
Where proceedings are electronically recorded (video and/or audio), the
design must prevent tampering with the recording system (i.e., the recorder,
the microphones and/or cameras, and the interconnecting cable network).
Office supplies: Lockable, storage drawers must be provided to
accommodate legal-sized pads. Drawer storage is also needed for pens,
The courtroom deputy clerk station must have a duress alarm device, allowing the
clerk to alert the USMS Command and Control Center without being detected.