An experiment allowing cameras in Indiana courtrooms is getting high marks, says the Indianapolis Star. Observers say the change has not been disruptive and attorneys have not been playing to the lens. Attorneys seem to be getting along better and are better prepared. Fears of lawyers showboating or witnesses being intimidated have proved unfounded.
A few problems have cropped up since Indiana Chief Justice Randall Shepard announced the program, which on July 1 began allowing video and still cameras in courts in Indianapolis, Evansville and Fort Wayne.
One concern involves the clicking noise that still cameras make. They have caused a few distractions, said Dan Byron, general counsel for the Indiana Broadcasters Association. He said the problem can be fixed by using a digital camera with an attachment that muffles sound. One of the biggest problems, Byron said, is that only about 15 percent of the suspects approached about allowing cameras have consented. Kenya Wright, accused of shooting Indianapolis Police Officer Michael Antonelli in the face last November, had agreed to allow cameras but changed his mind at the last minute.