Judge orders Maine broadcasters to produce interview tapes

FILE PHOTO - In this Friday, Feb. 1, 2013 photo, Eric Bunford, an editor and director for Maine Capitol Connection, tests the system that will be used to broadcast live legislative sessions at the State House, in Augusta, Maine. The Maine Public Broadcasting Network plans to launch its new channel this week. The channel, a kind of state version of the national C-SPAN, will air budget hearings live, and events such as news conferences, interviews and explanations of how the government works. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) – A judge has ordered Maine broadcasters to produce unaired tapes of prosecutor interviews in a murder case.

The Portland Press Herald reports (http://bit.ly/2qfZPqd ) the Maine Public Broadcasting Network and WGME-TV have seven days to comply with Monday’s order to hand over outtakes from interviews with Pamela Ames. Ames is a former assistant attorney general who won a conviction against Anthony Sanborn Jr. in the 1989 murder of his childhood girlfriend Jessica Briggs.

Sanborn served 27 years in prison before being released on bail in April after a witness recanted.

Sanborn’s attorney says Sanborn was the victim of prosecutorial misconduct. In interviews with MPBN and WGME, Ames says she never pressured witnesses.

News directors from both stations filed affidavits saying the release would create a “chilling effect” on future news gathering.


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