Citizens, activists, media from around the state, and even Sheriff Ivey himself were present in judge David Dugan’s courtroom in Viera this afternoon. A status conference in the Florida Today vs. BCSO lawsuit came to order shortly after noon today, with judge Dugan remarking about the importance of this case his excitement regarding the interest of the public.
Arguments in the hearing began this afternoon with attorneys for Florida Today pointing out that they believe they have provided to the attorneys for BCSO a more than reasonably redacted copy of the video necessary to address the security concerns at issue. Drafts of a written agreement were also exchanged prior to today’s hearing, but the attorneys for Florida Today took issue with a couple items on the proposed agreement. One such issue was a time constraint regarding when the video could be released.
Attorneys for BCSO stated they had also produced a redacted copy of the video in question, however their video is only one hour long whereas the video produced by the company hired by Florida Today’s legal team is of the full two hours Mr. Edwards spent inside the jail. Judge Dugan also remarked that the video from the Sheriff’s Office had something added to it, however because we at The Space Coast Rocket have not seen either video it is unclear what he meant by this. He also made it a point to state that the entire video, less the redactions for security reasons, should be released to the public.
Laura Moody, the lead attorney for BCSO made it clear that the Sheriff’s Office objects to Florida Today being allowed to view the redacted copies of the video created by either legal team, which raises some serious concerns. Florida Today is the plaintiff and the final decision maker, and should not be expected to agree to something sight unseen. Judge Dugan seemed to concur, but agreed that the attorneys should meet this afternoon to further the process of coming to an agreement before that would take place.