Jun 042011
 
 June 4, 2011  Court

An editorial in today’s Sacarmento Bee begins:

As a general proposition, we’re all for transparency and making information available to the public.

But some things we just don’t need to know.

El Dorado Superior Court Judge Douglas Phimister was absolutely right to keep under wraps the unspeakable details of Jaycee Lee Dugard’s 18 years of captivity.

On Thursday, he released much of the transcript of the grand jury testimony Dugard gave last September. But the judge appropriately sealed parts that were, in his words, “absolutely disgusting” and “just plain pornographic.”

There’s no compelling reason that such information should be part of the public domain – certainly not enough to outweigh Dugard’s right to privacy.

Read more in the Sacramento Bee.

For a media organization to take this position is admirable, although I suspect there will be some who disagree in the name of a “free press.” Personally, I am glad to see the editors of the Sacramento Bee recognizing that even though they might self-edit, others might not and that Ms Dugard is entitled to some privacy and choice as to what becomes known of her ordeal. That said, I realize that some media outlets might appeal the judge’s decision and this may not be over yet.

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