Friday, March 19, 2010

Cameras in inquests: Eventually, or maybe never

No cameras in Manitoba inquests, the judge says.

Manitoba Provincial Court Judge Tim Preston announced on March 19, 2010 that he will not allow broadcast or online streaming of the inquest into the death of Brian Sinclair.

Why not? Because he doesn't have to, for one thing. "The broadcast of an inquest is not something that is reasonably necessary to accomplish my mandate as a judge sitting at an inquest" (paragraph 61).

And besides, judges from the three levels of Manitoba courts will "eventually make decisions in this regard" (paragraph 33).

So until "eventually," people who cannot afford to take time off work or school to travel to downtown Winnipeg and compete for the limited number of seats in the courtroom will have to wait for the coverage in the traditional news media -- TV with no pictures from the courtroom, radio, newspapers.

Maybe they still will, even after "eventually."