Earlier this month, we saw a video of a detention officer swiping a document from the case file of an attorney during a legal proceeding in an Arizona courtroom.
Now we have a Las Vegas court officer detaining a group of journalists inside a courtroom to allow Michael Jackson’s former doctor to leave without being followed.
If Constitutional rights can be so blatantly abused in our courtrooms, then what can we expect in our everyday life?
The latest incident occurred Monday when Dr. Conrad Murray and his attorneys left the courtroom after a hearing over back child support payments. He is also a focal point in the investigation into Jackson’s death but has not been charged.
When a pool of reporters, videographers and producers from, The Associated Press and other media organizations attempted to follow him outside to attempt an interview, they were blocked by Dennis Curran, a uniformed court marshal.
Curran, who held them for several minutes as Murray was able to get into his car and drive away, said he was following orders from his supervisor, Sgt. Steve Rushfield, who did not respond to messages seeking comment.
A lawyer for the AP said it is illegal to detain journalists from lawfully pursuing a story.
Whoever ordered this improper and possibly unlawful detention has some explaining to do,” AP associate general counsel Dave Tomlin said.
Clark County courts spokesman Michael Sommermeyer was among the group detained. He said he didn’t know why they were detained but gave the usual spiel about it having to do with “safety and decorum.”
“They’re police officers,” he said. “I guess they can deem what is necessary for public safety.”
In the previous incident, Judge Lisa Flores defended the detention officer swiping the document from the case file by stating the following:
“I do just want to say for the record that the deputies in my courtroom are responsible for courtroom security and they have a quite a lot of leeway to do what they think is necessary in a situation.”
See the problem we’re facing?