FERGUSON, Mo. (KMOX) – A lawsuit has been filed seeking the release of any juvenile records that might exist on the central figure in the Ferguson deadly shooting case.
The Citizen Journalist website GotNews has filed suit in St. Louis County circuit court seeking possible juvenile records on Michael Brown.
Attorney Johnathon Burns of the Burns Law Firm in St. Louis is handling the case.
“What we’re arguing is that since he is deceased, those documents revert from being confidential, they revert back into the public sphere,” Burns says. “Missouri common law applies, and under Missouri common law, court records and virtually all other documents are open to the public.”
Saint Louis University Associate Law Professor Tricia Harrison says the purpose of Missouri’s juvenile code is make sure the juvenile’s right to confidentiality is protected, and courts are very hesistant to give that up.
“To suggest that the general public has a right to know what any juvenile does in any situation is ludicrous,” she says.
Harrison says if courts do give up the juvenile’s right to confidentiality, it’s only to specific parties like school personnel and counselors.
“It’s only legitimate persons having a legitimate interest in their situation,” she says.
A hearing in the case is set for September 3 before Judge Ellen Siwak.
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