Breckenridge Texan

Falling flag causes minor damage to Stephens County Courthouse

Falling flag causes minor damage to Stephens County Courthouse
June 07
22:11 2021

By Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texas

There was a little excitement this evening, Monday, June 7, at the Stephens County Courthouse when the large American flag that had been displayed on the front of the building apparently fell down, taking some of the upper edge of the building with it.

The large American flag hangs from the roof of the Stephens County Courthouse on holidays, such as Memorial Day. (Photo courtesy of Michael Roach/Stephens County)

This was a situation when the media became a part of the story, instead of just witnesses to the events. The Breckenridge Texan Publisher Tony Pikington and Editor Carla McKeown were driving through downtown just before 8 p.m. when they noticed that the flag had fallen and was laying on the front steps of the courthouse.

We called County Judge Michael Roach to let him know about the problem and then went to try and pick up the flag. When we got closer to the front of the building, we saw the large chunks of the building that had come down with the flag. Additionally, one of the lights that had been used to illuminate the flag was also torn down.

Amid the debris on the courthouse steps was a portion of one of the decorative lion’s heads that adorn the facade. Also, one of the artificial owls placed on the ledges of the courthouse to deter pests appeared to have been damaged as the flag and pieces of the roof fell.

The flag was still tied to the posts on either side of the steps and was connected to ropes that were still attached to the roof of the courthouse. When the judge arrived, he untied and cut the lower ropes.

Breckenridge Police Officers Drew Boggs and Justin Shockley were dispatched to the courthouse in response to a call from a concerned citizen. They temporarily roped off the front steps to the courthouse with police tape to prevent anyone from getting hurt in case any more pieces of the building fell.

Roach and Jhon Rios, who handles the maintenance at the courthouse, went up to the rooftop to assess the situation. They disconnected the rest of the ropes that were still attached to the flag and removed the remaining lights and brackets.

Roach said that one section of the roof’s edge had become detached and fallen. The remaining sections appeared to be firmly attached, he said.

The judge said he would consult with historical experts on Tuesday to determine the best course of action for getting the building repaired.

Stephens County Judge Michael Roach and courthouse employee Jhon Rios assess the damage to the edge of the courthouse roof after the large flag that had been attached to the roof fell. (Photo by Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texan)

Breckenridge Police Officers Justin Shockley and Drew Boggs put police tape around the front steps of the Stephens County Courthouse on Monday evening. They marked off the area in case any more of the courthouse roof’s edging fell. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

Cutline, top photo: Stephens County Judge Michael Roach and Breckenridge Texan Publisher Tony Pilkington look over the damage caused when the large American flag fell from the roof of the courthouse Monday evening. (Photo by Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texan)


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