McLean County Sherriff Jon Sandage is banning cell phones in the Law and Justice Center starting in June.
Sandage said some people were violating policy against photos and recordings in court.
"One of the particular incidents was a trial involving gang members and a witness was recorded. That recording was put on Facebook in an attempt to intimidate them," said Sandage/
Another incident involved taking photos of juveniles through the window of the courtroom door.
Sandage said these are not common problems, but his department is responsible for a secure environment. He acknowledged the inconvenience for some.
"We have dealt with that in the past. Cell phones haven't been around forever. Here's the thing. There is not a need for a cell phone in the courthouse atmosphere," said Sandage.
Exceptions are being made for attorneys, courthouse employees, and journalists.
Sandage says McLean County had been one of the few counties in the state that allows cell phones in courthouses.
WGLT depends on financial support from users to bring you stories and interviews like this one. As someone who values experienced, knowledgeable, and award-winning journalists covering meaningful stories in central Illinois, please consider making a contribution.