Judicial Action

March 28, 2008

Coffey, Patterson Lose Lawsuit Against Star

Indystar Former Indy Star employees Lisa Coffey and James Patterson lose their discrimination lawsuit against the newspaper on a summary judgment ruling.

Read the whole decision here: StarSuit.pdf

March 23, 2008

WXIN Honors DCS Restraining Order

Camera Here's a local example of possibly unconstitutional prior restraint in action, courtesy of this morning's Star:

Mark McGaha wanted to share his frustrations about the Department of Child Services with the public, but he never got the chance.

McGaha did an interview with an Indianapolis TV station, but a Fountain County judge issued a restraining order barring the station from airing his complaints or even showing his face -- apparently without even having seen the footage.

The segment about family advocacy group Honk For Kids was broadcast March 13, without McGaha's comments and with his face blocked out in a group shot of parents.

A legal scholar called Judge Susan Orr Henderson's action unconstitutional and said it "borders on judicial misconduct."

"Quite simply, a judge does not have the authority to stop the press from publishing or airing a story," said Henry Karlson, a professor