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Florida State Attorney Does Not Believe In Fancy Book Learning, First Amendment

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We all know about how Sarah Palin makes sure to read all the newspapers in existence, though if you ask her about that, you're being a bitch and you get what you deserve. In stark contrast to the voracious reading habits of Ms. Palin, we have the State Attorney for Florida's Fourth Judicial Circuit Court, Angela Corey, whose office prosecuted George Zimmerman, and who is proud to declare that she is not in need of any fancy news-reading, thank you very much.


State Attorney Angela Corey of the Jacksonville-based 4th Circuit doesn’t read newspapers and doesn’t think the public should know any details of a criminal case until it goes to a jury.[...]

Property Appraiser Jim Overton asked Corey about a story The New York Times had recently done on a police investigation in St. Johns County. Corey said she hadn’t read it because she doesn’t read any media.

“I don’t read any newspapers,” she said. “My people tell me what I need to know.”

Yr Wonkette is desperately in need of people who will read newspapers for us and tell us what we need to know, because that would free up a huge chunk of our day. However, yr Wonkette is only tasked with making dick jokes about the news, not being in charge of sending people away to prison for years.

Now, to be fair, there's something to be said for a prosecutor not reading news coverage of a case he or she is handling, given that they may wish to maintain some level of distance that enables them to focus only on the evidence that could be admitted at trial. Of course, that implies that you are a prosecutor who cannot tell the difference between information you may know from elsewhere and admissible evidence, which is a bit frightening. More frightening, though, is Corey's belief that the public at large would somehow benefit from a complete news blackout about high profile cases making their way through the courts.

Honestly, we're not even sure how that would work. Do you declare from the second someone is arrested that a case is "high profile?" No one thought the Trayvon case was going to blow up, so that wouldn't have worked out so well there. (Also, of course, there was no "arrest" for an awfully long time, which is why the case blew up.) Do you wait until there's a sufficient media feeding frenzy and then call the press and say "shut it down, folks! We got ourselves a high profile trial!" Can you keep who got charged with the crime a secret? And most importantly, how do you get around that pesky little First Amendment allowing papers to say whatever they damn well want as long as it is true or it is opinion? Also, too, do you just throw out Florida's Sunshine Law, which says that the government is sorta obliged to tell people what they're doing? Also also too, sunshine laws already allow police and prosecutors to keep a good deal of information secret already, so the notion that we're all learning super secret stuff about trials is a wee bit unfounded.

But hey, who are we to argue with a person whose office is so stacked with employees that she has people to read her newspapers for her? The Florida State Attorney's office of the Fourth Judicial District clearly has Twitchy levels of employment, so State Attorney Corey must be much better at grifting cash for her office budget than she is at book learning. Congrats?!

[Florida Times-Union via Washington Post]

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