Other Free Encyclopedias » Law Library - American Law and Legal Information » Notable Trials and Court Cases - 1981 to 1988 » Chandler v. Florida - Cameras In The Courtroom, Does The Constitution Forbid Televised Coverage Of Trials?, Impact, Televised Trials

Chandler v. Florida - Cameras In The Courtroom

television granger denied coverage

In July of 1977, two Miami Beach police officers, Noel Chandler and Robert Granger were charged with conspiracy to commit burglary, grand larceny and possession of burglary tools. During the burglary an amateur radio operator overheard and recorded conversations between Chandler and Granger over their police radios during the alleged burglary. Around the same time, the Florida Supreme Court approved a one-year pilot program that allowed televised coverage of all court proceedings in Florida as long as they did not infringe upon the rights of the accused. Additionally, under the pilot program, court proceedings could be covered by television stations and other electronic media outlets without the permission of the accused.

In a pre-trial motion, Chandler and Granger tried to have the pilot program declared unconstitutional. The trial court deferred to the Florida Supreme Court but it declined to rule claiming that the issue was not relevant to the charges against Chandler and Granger. The defendants continued to try to bar electronic coverage; however they were unsuccessful. Potential jurors were asked whether the presence of television cameras in the courtroom would impair or hamper their ability. Each juror selected stated that such coverage would not hamper them. The jury selection process was covered by a television camera. A defense motion to sequester the jury because of the television camera was denied. Jurors were told not to watch local news. The court denied a request by the defense that jurors be barred from watching any television news broadcasts. A television camera recorded the testimony of the state's key witness and closing arguments. The jury found Chandler and Granger guilty on all counts. The defendants motioned for a new trial asserting that the television coverage had denied them a "fair and impartial trial." The Florida District Court of Appeals upheld the convictions and the Florida Supreme Court denied review.

Chandler v. Florida - Does The Constitution Forbid Televised Coverage Of Trials? [next]

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or