TV Cameras Booted From Murder Trial for Breaking Judge’s Rules

By Kevin Eck 

A judge in Salem, Mass., presiding over the trial of a teen accused of raping and killing his math teacher, tossed the pool TV camera from his courtroom after a local TV photographer recorded the faces of jury members and zoomed in for a shot of a prosecutor’s paperwork, The Salem News reports.

Before the trial, judge David Lowy issued an order saying, “This paragraph should be interpreted in the broadest terms. Jurors and prospective jurors may not be captured by any video or camera from any angle whatsoever.” Lowy said he may bar cameras from the courtroom for the remainder of the trial.

“I warned that violating the court order has nothing to do with me. It’s about the integrity of the trial,” Lowy said Thursday morning before jurors were brought into the courtroom.

He asked aloud, “What’s the thought process of having a pool camera zoom in on a prosecutors note pad?”

Lowy further noted, however, that a free press is “a pillar of our living.”

“I could not be a bigger supporter of media covering what happens during a trial,” he said. He urged the media to use better judgment.

A quick check of TVeyes shows Boston Fox affiliate WFXT reported a camera picked up a sidebar conversation during the trial.