Where is Brian Nichols Now?

March 15, 2024

The murderer of four people is behind bars serving multiple life sentences without parole. He will never see the outside world again.

Courthouse gunman Brian Nichols killed a judge, a court reporter, a sheriff's deputy and a federal agent more than a decade ago. Nichols' victims' families have a hard time understanding how he could do such a thing. Their grief is now tempered by anger at what happened to their loved ones.

Nichols walked into the courtroom from a door behind the bench, shot Judge Rowland Barnes at close range in his head and then shot the victim he knew best, Julie Brandau. He also shot her at close range, and then he lowered the gun and fatally shot sheriff's Deputy Hoyt Teasley outside the courthouse and federal agent David Wilhelm in a north Atlanta home he was renovating.

After Nichols was jailed for a month and then sent to prison, his mother, Claritha, began to question her son. He had been convicted of state crimes and was incarcerated in a maximum security facility. He became increasingly delusional and believed that the conditions in the prison resembled slavery — poor sanitation, chains and labor without pay. He also started to believe that he was at war with the government. He compared the white judge in his case to a slavemaster and thought he was being hunted down. He drew pictures of a battleground and wrote that he was fighting the good fight.


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