Connecticut court rules Sandy Hook shooter’s writings be made public

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Connecticut’s Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the state’s open records laws do not exempt writings and some other personal belongings of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooter from being made public, the Associated Press reported.

The court ruled that Adam Lanza’s belongings, including a spreadsheet ranking mass murders and personal journals containing disturbing writings about hurting children must be made public by police.

According to AP, thousands of materials already have been released and could offer insight into Lanza’s motive for the shooting, which was never determined. 

{mosads}The 5-0 ruling following a lawsuit from local newspaper, The Hartford Courant, and other news outlets arguing that the materials should be made public to better understand Lanza’s thinking ahead of his decision to carry out the 2012 shooting. Connecticut police had rejected the request, citing privacy rights under the state’s search and seizure law, the AP noted.

“Understanding what a mass killer was thinking not only paints a clearer picture of the individual, it helps us identify and understand red flags that could be part of a prevention formula for future mass shootings,” the Courant’s editor-in-chief and publisher Andrew Julien told the AP.

State officials did not immediately return a request for comment from the AP on whether the state would appeal the ruling further to the U.S. Supreme Court.

In the decision, state Supreme Court Justice Raheem Mullins wrote that exceptions to the state’s open records laws must be clarified to define whether some evidence in criminal cases should be released to the public.

“The trial court pointed to nothing in the express terms of the search and seizure statutes that creates confidentiality in the documents or otherwise limits the disclosure, copying, or distribution of the documents,” Mullins wrote. “Indeed, the search and seizure statutes are silent on the issues of confidentiality, copying, or disclosure to the public.” 

Tags Adam Lanza Connecticut Gun control gun violence Sandy Hook shooting
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