ILNews

Court video online raises call for blanket cellphone policy

Dave Stafford
February 21, 2014
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Another recent incident of video streamed online that could compromise criminal courts has led judges in Marion County to consider a blanket policy restricting cellphone use in courtrooms.

Marion Superior Criminal Division 20 Judge Steven Eichholtz on Friday told the courts’ executive committee that recurring incidents of court sessions being recorded and posted online and other problems should be met with a unified policy for all courts in the City-County Building.

Judges have expressed similar concerns before, and Eichholtz said he was recently informed of another incident in which court proceedings wound up online. He said he’s also aware of photos of confidential informants and jurors that have been posted on social media.

“If this stuff continues, it’s a danger to the public,” he said.

Currently, each judge sets policy for his or her own courtroom, but Eichholtz said a uniform rule is needed. Judges agreed that if the courts spoke with one voice on the issue, it would also publicize any rule that’s approved by the judges of the Marion Superior general term.

Eichholtz said he’s adopted a policy that cellphones can’t be used in court except by attorneys or pro se litigants for court purposes.

Policies vary around the state. In Allen County, for instance, cellphones may not be brought into the courthouse except by attorneys or people authorized to have them. Saint Joseph and Lake counties have similarly restrictive policies.

 

 

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  1. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  2. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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