Popular in Course
verified elite notetaker
Popular in Business Management
This 1 page Document was uploaded by an elite notetaker on Monday December 21, 2015. The Document belongs to a course at a university taught by a professor in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 9 views.
Reviews for A-VICTORY-NOT-TO-CROW-ABOUT
Report this Material
What is Karma?
Karma is the currency of StudySoup.
You can buy or earn more Karma at anytime and redeem it for class notes, study guides, flashcards, and more!
Date Created: 12/21/15
COURT REPORTER 1.800.973.1177 A VICTORY NOT TO CROW ABOUT [by James Kilpatrick] We of the press recently won a victory in the courts of California. I’m sorry we won. As a partisan of a press that is both free and responsible, I express regret. This was a case we should have lost. The underlying facts are not in dispute. is no indication that the First Amendment publicity.” Nevertheless, the court sent the Sixteen years ago a salesman in Southern provides less protection to historians than to TV station home free. those reporting current events.” California was shot and killed. It transpired that the killing was murder for hire, set Since the Cox Broadcasting case in 1975, in motion by a prominent auto dealer. The The California court relied chiefly upon the the high court repeatedly has reaffirmed the dealer subsequently was convicted of mas- opinion of the U.S. Supreme Court in Cox gist of its holding. In cases from Oklahoma, terminding the plot. His assistant — call him Broadcasting v. Cohn in 1975. The case West Virginia, and most recently from Florida James Jackson — was at first charged as a involved the gang rape and murder of a 17- in 1989, our right as reporters truthfully to co-conspirator. year-old in Georgia. At the time, Georgia law report judicial proceedings has been upheld. prohibited publication of the names of rape The Florida case involved a one-paragraph In 1992, when the case went to trial, Jackson victims, but a reporter for Station WSB-TV report of a rape in Jacksonville. The victim pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of being picked up the victim’s name from the indict- sued the weekly Florida Star for disclos- an accessory after the fact. He served a m ents. In a news broadcast, the reporter ing her name. The newspaper won, 6-3, but three-year prison term, with time off for good identified the dead girl. Her father sued Justice Thurgood Marshall observed point- behavior. The San Bernardino Superior Court for invasion of privacy. He won in the lower edly that “our cases have carefully eschewed granted him a certificate of rehabilitation. courts but lost on the station’s appeal. reaching the ultimate question, of whether Then he vanished into civilian anonymity. truthful publication may never be punished.” The high court defined the question: “Wheth- Not for long. In 2001 a television company, er the state may impose sanctions on the The long and short of it is that we of the Discovery Communications, produced a accurate publication of the name of a rape press have an unqualified right to publish documentary about the 1988 plot. The show victim obtained from public records — more accurate and timely reports of judicial pro- identified Jackson as a bit player. It included specifically, from judicial records which are c eedings. We also have a right to resurrect a mug shot of him, taken at the time of his maintained in connection with a public pros- old cases, such as the 1988 murder for hire arrest. He sued for invasion of his privacy. ecution and which themselves are open to in California. It may not be “news of the day,” The producer responded that the Jackson public inspection.” Said Justice Byron White: but we can do it. The question in cases such portion was based upon official records “We are convinced that it may not do so.” as the case of James Jackson is, Should we of a public judicial proceeding. Images of do it? Tell me. After a long life of rough and Jackson, counsel contended, were therefore Justice William O. Douglas sweepingly con- tumble, I must be turning soft. “privileged” under a string of Supreme Court curred. The state may not penalize truthful precedents. Case dismissed. publication of “news of the day.” Any other (Readers are invited to send dated citations rule “would inevitably induce self-censor- of usage to Mr. Kilpatrick. His e-mail address Last December the California Supreme ship by the media, thereby inhibiting the is firstname.lastname@example.org.) Court unanimously affirmed. The crime of rough and tumble discourse which the First 1988 may not have been “newsworthy” in Amendment so clearly protects.” COPYRIGHT 2005 UNIVERSAL PRESS SYN- 2001, but this was of no consequence. And DICATE true, Jackson had lived “an obscure, lawful Justice White was not so sure of that. This feature may not be reproduced or dis- life and become a respected member of the “Powerful arguments can be made that, tributed electronically, in print or otherwise community.” No matter. The press has an however it may be defined, there is a zone of without the written permission of uclick and “absolute right” to report the contents of privacy surrounding every individual, a zone Universal Press Syndicate. public records. The case had become history, within which the state may protect him from said Justice Kathryn M. Werdegar, and “there intrusion by the press, with all the attendant PAGE 1
Are you sure you want to buy this material for
You're already Subscribed!
Looks like you've already subscribed to StudySoup, you won't need to purchase another subscription to get this material. To access this material simply click 'View Full Document'