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MEDIA ADVISORY

June 16, 2000
Re: In Re Michael S.
(Skakel)

The following media organizations submitted timely requests for seats at the reasonable cause hearing in the abovementioned case:

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There are 42 seats available in the courtroom where the Skakel hearing will be held. We have reserved 16 for members of the victim's and respondent's families and counsel.

One seat is reserved for the Trial Court Administrator and five seats have been designated as seats for members of the public.

All of the organizations that requested sketch artists named the same two artists. Because of the difficulties we have had in the past with accommodating the artists' materials, the judge has determined that we will make a special exception and permit the artists to sit in the jury box.

Since we are unable to seat all of the media who filed timely requests, we will have to have media pools. The media seats will be allocated in proportion to the number of requests in each of the above categories. The number of seats available for each category of media is listed below:

Television -- 10 seats
Radio -- 2 seats
Print (Dailies) -- 6 seats
Wire Services -- 1 seat
Magazines -- 1 seat
Sketch Artists -- jury box

Each group will set up its own system for pooling and seating. You may draw lots, set up a revolving system throughout the day or day-to-day, or devise any other system that is satisfactory to you. We request that one representative from each media outlet from the above organizations meet with the Trial Court Administrator in Courtroom 2 at 123 Hoyt Street, Stamford, CT at 9:15 a.m. to organize the pools.

If group members wish, they may make the seating determinations prior to June 20th and report the results to the Trial Court Administrator in Courtroom 2 at 9:15 am. If at any time seats become available, members of the public will be admitted on a first-come, first-served basis.

This reasonable cause hearing will be held in Courtroom 2 at 123 Hoyt Street, Stamford, CT at 10 a.m. on June 20th. In order to ensure the confidentiality of persons involved in other pending juvenile matters and to provide more courtroom seating, the hearing will be held at the Judicial District Courthouse at 123 Hoyt Street, Stamford, CT. Hon. Maureen Dennis will be presiding. Judge Dennis has not yet issued an opinion on the motion concerning the release of documents in this case.

The courtroom is on the first floor of the building. There is no onsite parking. Directions to the courthouse are available at our website (www.jud.ct.gov). MetroNorth has frequent trains from Grand Central Station to Stamford and there are cabs and a city shuttle bus available at the station.

We will have information packets available for the media at the sheriff's desk at the entrance to the building. No cameras, recording devices, food or drink are permitted in the courthouse. The sheriffs will not permit entry to anyone having any of these items with them.

Please refer all inquires to Lorraine Murphy, Trial Court Administrator for the Judicial District of Stamford/Norwalk, (203) 965-5271 or fax (203) 965-5389.

 

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