25
Feb
12

Small-Town Court Blazing Path to In-Court Cameras

Now that the last legal hurdle has been cleared, an alleged serial killer’s trial marks the first big test of a new policy to allow cameras in Illinois courts. And the questions for the courthouse that will be pioneering the historic effort will switch from the sublime to the practical.

For Nicholas Sheley’s June trial, the burden of finding those answers falls to the technical services manager at the red-brick county courthouse in Morrison _ a rural town in northwest Illinois that’s suddenly in the spotlight as officials statewide tune in to see how the experiment plays out.

Standing in the courtroom that will host Sheley’s trial, court techie John Maas explained that the plan is to place a television camera amid the spectators’ benches in the back. They’ll cut a hole in a ceiling tile and run a cable up, over a hallway and back down into the courthouse library.

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