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Name: Bellas v. Superior Court (People)
Case #: A091294
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 1 DCA
Division: 2
Opinion Date: 12/18/2000
Subsequent History: None

The trial court erred in issuing a contempt order against a deputy public defender for refusing to return to the court defense copies of juror questionnaires prepared by the venire in a criminal prosecution. The U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment interest in providing public access to judicial proceedings outweighs the jurors’ generalized privacy interests as to the content of the questionnaires, and the jurors should have been so advised by the court. As to personal identifying information of trial jurors, the law provides limited privacy protection by requiring the redaction of their identifying information unless good cause for access is shown upon noticed motion.