Thursday, April 18, 2013

N.J. Blogger Protected by Shield Law, Judge Rules

Census Bureau map of Union Township, Union Cou...
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Union County (N.J.) Superior Court Judge Karen Cassidy last week extended the Garden State's shield law [N.J. Stat. sec. 2A: 84A-21 to 21.8] to protect a 51-year-old Cranford blogger who alleged county employees misused portable generators during Hurricane Sandy, the Star-Ledger reported.

Judge Cassidy said Tina Renna, whom prosecutors had subpoenaed to reveal the names of the 16 county workers she alleged improperly used the generators, should be shielded by the statute from having to disclose the information, according to the Star-Ledger article. Renna "obtained material in the course of professional newsgathering activities," Judge Cassidy wrote, to disseminate the information over the Internet.

Renna, the gadfly spouse of a former independent candidate for county freeholder, often targets Union County elected officials in blog posts, the quality and tone of which didn't necessarily sit well with the Court. Nevertheless, the trial court decision seemingly expands shield law protection to electronic media denizens.

The Union County prosecutor's office is weighing whether to appeal Judge Cassidy's ruling, the Star-Ledger reported.
Enhanced by Zemanta

No comments:

Post a Comment