Vulnerability Management

Burglary charges dropped against Coalfire pen testers

Charges against two Coalfire employees who were arrested while conducting a physical penetration test of the Dallas County, Iowa courthouse have been dropped, according to a company statement.

After discussions held between Coalfire and the Dallas County Attorney and Sheriff’s Office it was decided to dismiss the charges of third-degree burglary and possession of burglary tools. At the time there was some confusion as the Iowa Judicial Branch confirmed in a press release that Coalfire was hired to check for vulnerabilities in its electronic records, but the agreement “did not intend, or anticipate, those efforts to include the forced entry into a building.”

"With positive lessons learned, a new dialogue now begins with a focus on improving best practices and elevating the alignment between security professionals and law enforcement," said Coalfire CEO Tom McAndrew, adding, "We're grateful to the global security community for their support throughout this experience."

Coalfire staffers Gary Demercurio and Justin Wynn were arrested on September 11, 2019 as they were walking around on the court house’s third floor allegedly carrying a variety of burglary tools. The Perry News quoted a police report that upon arrest the men claimed, “they were contracted to break into the building for Iowa courts to check the security of the building.”

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