February 4th, 2010
Kansas reporter could be forced to reveal source
By David Cuillier
Claire O’Brien, a reporter for the Dodge City Globe in Kansas, could be forced to reveal her confidential source and provide her notes after the Kansas Supreme Court this week rejected her appeal for a hearing and denied anyone (such as SPJ) from submitting friend-of-the-court amicus briefs.
O’Brien conducted a jail-house interview with a murder suspect, and the prosecutor wants all her notes and the identity of other sources included in her stories. She doesn’t have anything that will help the prosecutor, but she might go to jail if she stands up for her sources.
This is why Kansas needs a shield law. And it’s another example of why we need shield protection in every state (the 15 that don’t have it) and at the federal level.