EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT)- Indiana will soon allow media cameras in courtrooms with a judges approval.
Vanderburgh Superior Court Chief Judge, Les Shively, says allowing media cameras in courtrooms is a good idea, if it does not interrupt court proceedings. Shively was part of the pilot that launched in 2021 in five Indiana counties. He says that participating in the program helped him see the benefits of allowing cameras in the courtroom.
“This is a way the public can actually observe what goes on in the courts and better understand the process,” he says.
July 2006 was one of the only times the media was allowed to have cameras in the courtroom in Vanderburgh County. Cameras inside the courtroom also created a way for millions of people to watch the OJ Simpson trial over 25 years ago. But the judges says the respect for courts has gone down over the years.
“One thing that breeds misunderstanding is the lack of information. This (the cameras) are a way the public can observe what is going on in their courts and better understand the process,” he says.
The judge says there are some limits on the new policy. For example, minors and victims of sexual or violent crimes cannot be recorded.
“You cannot show any videos or pictures of jurors or potential jurors,” he says.
The policy will be handled on a judge by judge basis, some of which are not on board with the idea. Posey County Judge Craig Goedde and Gibson County Judge Robert Kreig both say they will not allow cameras in their courtrooms. Shively says media outlets must let the judge know prior to coming to the court case.