The Florida Supreme Court will decide an issue that has broad consequences for holding law enforcement officers accountable.
The Fourth Circuit just revived a lawsuit challenging a Maryland statute that prohibits individuals from broadcasting courtroom audio transcripts. Says "lawfully obtained recordings cannot constitutionally be punished ‘absent a need to further a state interest of the highest order.'"
On April 22nd, the First Amendment Coalition (FAC), a nonprofit public interest organization, filed a lawsuit against Ventura County in Southern California. FAC alleges the County violated the California Public Records Act (CPRA) after failing to appropriately respond to two requests for information regarding data on COVID-19 outbreaks and deaths, thus violating the right of access under the First Amendment.
Since her nomination to then-President-Elect Joe Biden's Cabinet, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo has stopped answering journalists' questions about the pandemic and vaccine distribution. According to The Providence Journal, Raimondo’s last weekly COVID-19 briefing was on December 22, 2020.
The legislation affirms the right of individuals to record law enforcement activity, and to keep their recordings. The law goes into effect in 30 days.
Although it is common for courtrooms in the United States to limit the use of cameras and recording equipment during criminal proceedings, the Maryland statute is peculiar in that it applies even to audio recordings produced by the courts and available for public use.
Local officials in Florida experiment with digital technologies to ensure public access after the governor suspends law requiring in-person meetings.
The officials, who wished to remain anonymous, told Reuters that documented exchanges between health officials about “the scope of infections, quarantines and travel restrictions” have been removed from public record and placed in a “high-security meeting room” at the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS).