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Bench & Bar of Minnesota is the official publication of the Minnesota State Bar Association.

MSBA speaks against permanent codification of cameras in the courtroom pilot at Supreme Court hearing

On April 25, MSBA President Sonia Miller-Van Oort and Max Keller, chair of the Criminal Law Section, spoke at the Court’s public hearing to express the MSBA’s opposition to the proposal to permanently codify a pilot project allowing cameras in the courtroom. The MSBA’s two main concerns are that: 1) the small sample size of the pilot does not warrant a conclusion that it would be beneficial to allow cameras in the courtroom throughout the state—soundbite video clips do little to advance transparency and the cause of justice; and 2) permanent codification of the pilot would unfairly impact defendants and crime victims. Victims who are already fearful may decide not to provide statements at sentencings in case they are televised. Defendants whose sentences are later overturned or expunged may still have video recordings haunt them on the internet. Click here to watch video of the hearing.

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