Thursday, April 12, 2007

Names of Jurors Can be Sealed

On the heels of their March 28 decision in Eagle-Tribune v. Lawrence Clerk Magistrate that the press has no right of access to show-cause hearings, the Supreme Judicial Court decided last week in Com. v. Silva that a judge may seal the names of jurors with good cause. In this case, Bristol Superior Court Judge Gary A. Nickerson sealed the names of jurors in a gang-related murder trial out of fear for their safety. The New Bedford Standard-Times had sought access to the juror information after the trial, and brought this case after the records were sealed.