Savannah Dietrich Supplemental Memorandum

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Savannah Dietrich Supplemental Memorandum Powered By Docstoc
					CASE NO.          10-J-701053                                  JEFFERSON DISTRICT COURT
                  12-J-700320                                           JUVENILE SESSION
                  12-J-700321                              JUDGE ANGELA McCORMICK BISIG


IN THEMATTER OF:

SAVANNAH DIETRICH, et al




             SUPPLEMENTAL MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF
     THE COURIER-JOURNAL'S MOTION FOR ACCESS TO COURT RECORDS

        The Courier-Journal,        Inc. (the "Courier-Journal" ), by counsel,          hereby   submits   this

supplemental     memorandum       in support   of its motion for   leave to intervene    in this case and for

access to the court records in this matter. This supplemental         memorandum        is submitted solely to

inform the Court     of actions   that have occurred after the August 21, 2012 hearing and which are

relevant to the pending motion.

        On August       22, 2012, a news article was published            in the online      publication   The

Huffington     Post. A copy of the article is attached as Exhibit 1. The article is entitled "Savannah

Dietrich, 17-Year-Old Sexual Assault Victim, Ruined Attacker's Life, Lawyer Says." (Id.) The

article contains numerous quotes from counsel for Defendant AZ. (See id.) Among other things,

AZ's counsel publicly stated,

       He [AZ] has lost all the potential that was there. He was attending high school
       and was kicked out. He was on course to a scholarship to an Ivy League school to
       play sports and that may be jeopardized. He's in therapy. He's just overwhelmed
       and devastated by what started from the conduct of this young girl saying false
       things as she did.
        AZ's also is quoted as saying,

        The victim, in a fit of anger, tweets my client's name, calls him a rapist—
        something he was never accused of —     and said the court system was corrupt and
        he got away with what he did.... She also said he videotaped her and put in on
        the internet. There never was a rape, there was no video and there was nothing on
        the Internet. But he did admit to the conduct as charged which was criminal
        sexual abuse or touching.

(Id. at 1.)

        In addition       to the numerous     statements      about the facts   of   the underlying   case, AZ's

counsel is quoted as saying that the real reason for the contempt motion filed in this case against

Ms. Dieitrich was that      "...we wanted      our clients'ames      off the Internet and wanted her to know

that what she was doing was wrong." (Id. at             1.)

        All    of these   statements   are attributed    to AZ's counsel as part of an interview he gave to

The Huffington      Post with full knowledge and consent for the statements to be published.                  The

Courier-Journal     agrees that AZ and his counsel have the right to make public statements                  about

such issues.     Yet, in the August 21, 2012 hearing, AZ's counsel vehemently                 argued against the

Courier-Journal's     motion by repeatedly        stating that he and his client have deliberately         avoided

making public statements about the facts          of this case. Since AZ's counsel        has put out his version

of the facts, he    should not be heard to complain about the public having access to all the facts in

the court files.

        In the hearing,       AZ's counsel claimed that the confidentiality            of juvenile court    should

prevail over the public interest in disclosure in this case, even in the face              of unanswered    public

questions     about the facts   of the case and how the case was         handled in the justice system.       That

argument      is clearly wrong in light of the attached news article.           AZ's counsel has made public

statements     about the facts    of the   underlying     case, about how the case was handled, about the

case's ramifications for AZ (such as being kicked out of school and seeking therapy), and about
the reasons for the contempt     motion against Ms. Dietrich.         The public statements   made by

counsel for AZ provide further "good cause" to release the court records in this case under KRS

610.340(1)(a) so that the public may make its own informed judgment.           Accordingly,   the Court

should grant the Courier-Journal's   motion to intervene and release the records.

                                           CONCLUSION

       For all the reasons set forth herein and in the Courier-Journal's     previous memoranda,    the

Court should grant the Courier-Journal's   motion and should release the court records.

                                                       Respectfully      bmitted,


                                                                            KdwA.
                                                       Jon L. Flei haker
                                                       Jeremy S. ogers
                                                       DINSMO        k SHOHL LLP
                                                       101 S. Fifth Street
                                                       2500 National City Tower
                                                       Louisville, KY 40202
                                                       Telephone (502) 540-2300
                                                       Facsimile (502) 585-2207
                                                       Counsel for the Courier- Journal
                               CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

nt       It is hereby certified that copies of the foregoing were served via hand-delivery   this
     day of August, 2012 to:



Thomas C. Clay
Clay Frederick Adams, PLC
101 Meidinger Tower
462 South Fourth Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40202
Counsel for Savannah Dietrich

Emily N. Farrar-Crockett
Louisville Metro Public Defender's Office
200 Advocacy Plaza
717-719 W Jefferson St.
Louisville, KY 40202
Counsel for Savannah Dietrich

David Mejia
455 S. 4'" Street, Suite 382
Louisville, KY 40202
Counsel for AZ

Christopher J. Klein
600 W. Main Street, Suite 300
Louisville, KY 40202
Counsel for 5'F

Michael O'onnell
Jefferson County Attorney's Office
Jefferson Hall of Justice
600 West Jefferson Street
Louisville KY 40202

Hon. Angela McCormick Bisig
Chief Regional District Judge
Louis D. Brandeis Hall Of Justice
600 W. Jefferson St.
Louisville, KY 40202




                                           Counsttf for the Couriergurnat
EXHIBIT 1
                    Savannah Dietrich, jp-Year-Old Sexual Assault Victim,
                    Ruined Attacker1s Life, Lawyer Says
                    Posted: 08/21/2012 5:28 pm Updated: 08/22/2012 9:26 am


                                                                           Savannah Dietrich, a Kentucky teenager who was sexually assaulted and then threatened with jail
                                                                           for naming her attackers, has reportedly destroyed the life of at least one of the perpetrators,
                                                   ;,ss
                                                                           "He's had to move," Davicl Mejia, the attorney for one of the attackers, told The Huffington Post.
                                                                           "He has lost all the potential that was there. He was attending high school and was kicked out, He
                                                                          was on course to a scholarship to an Ivy League school to play sports and that may be
                                                                          jeopardized, He's in therapy, He's just overwhelmed and devastated by what started from the
                                                                          conduct of this young girl saying false things as she did.s

                                                                          Mejia filed a contempt motion against Dietrich in July, She had tweeted the names of two teenage
                    Savannah Oletrlch named hor attackers on Twitter,
                                                                          boys who assaulted her back in August 2011.
                    ruining at least one of their lives, a lawyer says,
                                                                          After naming       the boys, Dietrich, then     16, tweeted,       nl'm   not protecting   anyone that made my life a
                                                                          living Mell."

                   PHOTOS of Dieirich, story continues below

                   Dletrich's anger stemmed from a June hearing in which the teenagers confessed to felony sexual abuse and misdemeanor                                            voyeurism,   She
                   and her family were reportedly frustrated by the plea bargain the boys made with the state.

                   "If reporting a rape only got me to the point that           I'm   not allowed to talk about it, then     I   regret it," Dietrich wrote on Facebook,      el   regret reporting
                   it."

                   Mejia said that he and his client were angry about the posts and that Dietrich was not entirely honest.

               "The victim, in a fit of anger, tweets my clients name, calls him a rapist —something he was never accused of —    and said the court system
               was corrupt and he got away with what he did,e Mejla said, sShe also said he videotaped her and put it on Internet, There never was a rape,
               there was no video and there was nothing on the Internet, But he did admit to the conduct as charged which was criminal sexual abuse or
               touching."

               The two boys charged were juveniles, and the court therefore kept the details of the                          case     confidential,

               Dietrich, now 17, tcJlc ABC's "N~ih~tines what helps?~one                    the night she was assaulted in an interview Monday,

               She said she was               drinking    with friends when   she passed out. When she later awoke, she discovered her clothes were disheveled                             and felt
               like "something wasn't right."

               sl had my        dress back on but my bra was shifted            all weird and then my underwear           was off,s Dietrich told "Nightlineo host Juju Chang.

              After the party, Dletrich said she was told the two boys had taken photos of her.

              "They told me that it was me on the kitchen floor, passed out, my eyes are closed," she said. "My clothes are — exposed. Someone said
                                                                                                                             I'm
              one boy had his arm broken at the time and said his cast was in the picture."

              The details of the punishment                  the boys ultimately received is unknown,       since court records have been witheld,
              "Due to the confidentiality and privacy of the whole thing I am constrained except to say that what she is saying is a mlscharacterization.                                       It'
              not accurate. It's not true. What is the truth'? That I cannot say," Mejia said,

              In the motion Mejia filed, he requested    that Dietrich be held in contempt for violating the confidentiality of a juvenile. Dietrich could have
              faced 180 days in jail, but Mejia said that was not what he wanted. The motion, he said, was not to punish Dietrich, but to have a judge force
              her to delete her online posts about the boys.
              nl   was hoping she would even have some remorse or an apology to give. That didn't happen," Mejia said Monday on ABC's sNightlines

              The veteran attorney echoed those remarks during an interview with HuffPost,

              "When we filed the motion, we wanted our client's names off the Internet and wanted her to know that what she was doing was wrong," he
              said. "[She should] acknowledge what she's done, remove the name and promise not to do                                   it   again,"


www.huffingtonpost,corn/2012/08/21/savannah-dietrich-sexual-assault                    n   1819572.html?view=print8t..,                                                                         1/2
                Eiut the motion prompted      a flurry of national media attention and was quickly withdrawn. According to Me]la, canceling the motion did   nothing
                to stop the influx of hate   messages he and his client received.

                "Everybody got hate letters and worse for this young boy          —this   high school kid was getting tweets,   Facebook [messages],   all kinds of
                terrible things. He even got death threats," the lawyer said.

                Dietrich told "Nightline" she identified her attackers because she felt like their punishment was a slap on the wrist. "I was upset," Dietrich
               said. "I felt like they got less than theminimal punishment ...I knew that they were manipulating the system to silence me."

               Mejia said that his client is devastated and would like to move on with his life, but that the Internet has made that impossible,

               "I think it's rather astonishing how the Internet changes everything," he said. "Look at [Rep. Todd Akin], the politician from Missouri who was
               on the news a few days ago and made a comment about 'legitimate rape.'hose comments have now gone viral and he is ruined, Twenty
               years ago it would not have happened like this. These things just stream with enormous speed across the whole country."

               Dietrich's attorney, Emily Farrar-Crockett, did not return a call for comment from HuffPost on Tuesday. Speaking on "Nightline" Monday, she
               was unsympathetic    to Mejia's complaints,

               "They took the pictures, they disseminated it, they told people about what they had done, To come back and blame her now for ruining their
               reputation I think is despicable, They did this to themselves," Farrar-Crockett said,




www.huffingtonpost.corn/2012/08/21/savannah-dietrich-sexual-assault     n   1819572.html?view=print8L..                                                          2/2

				
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Description: An attorney for The Courier-Journal has filed a motion for the release of court documents in the Savannah Dietrich case. This supplemental memorandum was filed to notify the court of a Huffington Post article by Senior Crime Reported David Lohr in which one of the defense attorneys put out his version of the facts, after allegedly complaining about the possibility of the public having access to the court files.