THE PEOPLE’S COURT: Indiana representative pushes for cameras in Clark County courtrooms

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News and Tribune on 01/12/2016 by Elizabeth DePompei

As it was with the 2006 pilot program and as it is in other states, Carmichael would like to see an agreement that allowed one camera or one feed for all media to use, instead of cramming several cameras into Clark County’s small courtrooms. As for her concern that the public and media would only see snippets of the process, one idea Carmichael saw implemented in another county was to require media to stay for the entire proceedings.

Stemler said he’s met with Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Loretta Rush and was encouraged by their initial conversations. Kathryn Dolan, the court’s chief public information officer, said Rush is favor of the news media understanding how the courts work.

“She promotes greater transparency as a way to encourage media to cover the courts,” Dolan wrote in an email, adding that Rush has not seen a draft of Stemler’s bill. “Chief Justice Rush is willing to look at this issue in the future in a measured, studied manner.”

Carmichael said she’ll sit down with Clark County’s three other circuit court judges to discuss the pros and cons of bringing a pilot program to the county. The judges would then meet with state Supreme Court officials, including Dolan, to generate ideas and talk about next steps. Other county judges have had similar conversations in the past, Carmichael said, but Clark County could be one of the few to follow through with a pilot program.