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Maryland Judiciary to Review Rules Change That Could Make it Harder to Access Official Video and Audio Recordings of Court Proeceedings

Public defenders, scholars, and journalists thought it would become easier to access recorded audio and video of Maryland Court Proceedings after a U.S. District Judge named Richard D. Bennett struck down Maryland’s so-called “broadcast ban,” after determining that the law violated the First Amendment. But now the Baltimore Sun reports the state judiciary is considering a rule that would prevent the public from obtaining audio recordings of criminal court cases altogether.  The Supreme Court of Maryland’s Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure is recommending that a new rule be enacted that would reportedly create an obstacle to accessing recordings from judicial proceedings.  The rule will be discussed on Friday, January 6th by the Maryland Supreme Court. It would require those who want to view or listen to recordings would only be allowed to do so at a courthouse and under the supervision of a judiciary staffer, where they would be barred from making a copy of the recording.

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