Attorneys for admitted multiple murderer and child molester Joseph Duncan now say there’s been too much secrecy in the killer’s death sentence proceedings, and they’re objecting to a planned closed court hearing set for Thursday. The defense attorneys said the extensive secrecy in the case, from filing documents under seal to actual closure of proceedings, violates both the 1st Amendment and Duncan’s 6th Amendment right to a public trial. “The defense acknowledges its participation in the culture of secrecy in this case up to this point,” the attorneys, led by Seattle attorney Mark Larranaga, wrote in today’s filings. “Having now considered the issues implicated by such practices, the defense believes it has mistakenly gone along with the same in the past. The instant motion has been brought to avoid allowing that improper practice to continue.” They asked U.S. District Judge Edward Lodge to rule swiftly on their motion, and if he denies it to stay Thursday’s hearing so they can appeal his decision to the 9th Circuit. You can read my full story here at spokesmanreview.com.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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