The value of cameras in the courtroom

I am sitting in the Federal Courthouse in Washington DC, waiting for a verdict in the Libby trial. I’ve just gotten back from lunch where I sat with a few people from CourtTV. I told them the story about Ken Krayeske’s arrest, hoping to stir up a little interest in the case. One person, however, mentioned that Connecticut doesn’t allow cameras in its courtrooms.

It seems like this is another topic that folks at MyLeftNutmeg might want to start talking about with their State Representatives and State Senators. Does anyone here know what the rules are about cameras in the courts in Connecticut and how to go about opening up the Connecticut courts to cameras?

(Cross posted at MyLeftNutmeg)

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The Libby Trial Media Room updates

The air conditioning appears to be fixed. Someone is piping in music over the speakers. Currently, it is “God only knows what I’d be with out you” by the Beach Boys.

The room continues to fill up. The song ends and another comes on. People argue over what the new song is. One person asks, "Is it true that this is music from Fitzgerald's iPod?"

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In the media room

Tuesday, Week six. Everyone is busy typing away, preparing for a hoped for verdict. People talk about whether or not it will come today. There is a sense of anticipation. The media room is hot, the air conditioning isn’t working properly. There are jokes about it being fixed soon after the verdict is delivered. People talk about wearing their verdict suits today, and the room is packed today.

As we sit and wait for a verdict, the monitor is showing Judge Walton’s courtroom. He is currently hearing the case of some young black man who has violated parole, or something like that. I haven’t been paying close. Then, over the speaker comes Judge Walton speaking forcefully, “I find it deplorable for a young black man want to put himself in chains. If that is all you think you are worth, then we will do that to you.” The defendant asks to be sent to a facility that provides mental health and asks to have other health issues addressed.

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NewsTrust: Your guide to good journalism

Over the past several months, I’ve been involved with a site called NewsTrust. The coverage of the Libby Trial provides a good example of where NewsTrust can fit into the media landscape. NewsTrust is a site where readers can submit and review stories for their journalistic qualities.

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Power Outage Continues

The power is still out. Reports are now circulating that the UPSes in the building are failing and that the power failure is outside the building, and also affecting the Superior Court building.

Update: 4:03 Power seems to be coming back. A light in a neighboring room has come on. The power strips have come back, and the WiFi's UPS has stopped beeping.

They have now started piping John Hiatt in over the loudspeakers... Just like your Dad did off of Bring The Family...

Update 4:32 The lights in the media room have come back on. The monitor is working again. Word is that the systems aren't all up and that if a verdict came today, the judge might refuse to accept it until tomorrow.

The juror that was dismissed has apparently been forbidden by the judge to speak with the media.

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