Holmes' lawyers object to media requests to release investigative documents to public
Prosecutors say OK if victims, witnesses kept out
Last Updated: 255 days ago
CENTENNIAL, Colo. - Lawyers for Aurora movie theater shooting suspect James Holmes have objected to requests by news organizations to release investigative documents involved in the case to the public.
Prosecutors, meanwhile, say they don't object to the release as long as police reports and the names of victims and witnesses are redacted.
The Associated Press and 18 other news organizations want the judge to release documents including affidavits that law-enforcement officers submitted to explain why they wanted arrest and search warrants.
Both the prosecution and the defense disclosed their positions in court documents filed Tuesday.
"The defense’s position remains that the public’s First Amendment right of access is being fully satisfied by its ability to attend the proceedings in this case, all of which have been held open in court,” the document from the defense said. “Mr. Holmes therefore objects to the requested unsealing.”
"The defense maintains that these… requested disclosures from the court file will further jeopardize Mr. Holmes’ constitutional rights to due process, a fair trial, to be presumed innocent, and to a fair and impartial jury,” the defense’s response says.
The prosecution says that the release of the documents is in the public’s best interest, but that the sensitivity of the case requires that the names of witnesses and victims remain confidential.
The response filed by prosecutors says that they "respectfully request that the Court redact any police reports… and also redact any victim and witness identifying-information from these documents before they are released in the public court file.”
Otherwise, the response says, the prosecutors "do not object to the media’s request" to make investigative documents public.
The judge hasn't said when he'll rule on the media request.
Holmes is charged with killing 12 people and injuring 70 in the July 20 shootings at an Aurora movie theater.
A judge entered a not guilty plea on Holmes' behalf. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.
See the defense's response here: http://ch7ne.ws/14Mfls5
See the prosecution's response here: http://ch7ne.ws/17c2hvJ
Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.