Friday, September 30, 2011

DeKalb prosecutor targets journalists for subpoenas

Chicago Judge Robbin Stuckert expects to rule by November 8 a case that an attorney for press interests says would violate Illinois' Reporter's Privilege Act.

At issue is DeKalb County State's Attorney Clay Campbell's argument that journalists must turn over their notes from jailhouse interviews with suspects if subpoenaed.

Campbell conceded that journalists have "a competing interest" but he argued that State's Attorneys have an obligation to "prosecute cases as thoroughly as possible."

He did not explain why law enforcement or prosecutors have so little resources that independent information from reporters woould be needed to fully investigate criminal cases.

The Reporter's Privilege Act generally protects journalists from being required to divulge information they gather in the performance of their work.