Federal judge denies request to release Chasse documents

From the Oregonian, October 28, 2009

A federal judge on Wednesday denied a request to release a variety of documents in the death of James P. Chasse, Jr., who was beaten by Portland police officers in 2006 as they tried to take him into custody.

An attorney for Chasse’s family had asked the court to set aside a protective order that barred the public release of the documents, which include an internal investigative review and police training records.

But U.S. Magistrate Garr King said he feared that publicity would influence potential jurors in the civil case that is scheduled to go to court next year.

“What I want to do is obtain an untainted jury,” King said.

Tom Steenson, the attorney for the Chasse family, argued in court documents that the city and the police bureau violated the order when they announced the findings of an internal review last month. Steenson also asserted that the order has prevented him and the family from commenting on that announcement.

But the city argued that it did not violate the order because it did not release any confidential internal affairs documents.

READ – about Garr King