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March 1999, Week 4


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Kino International Corporation <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 24 Mar 1999 17:31:50 -0500
text/plain (47 lines)
Well here is the latest
 In a series of rulings the federal judge reaffirmed that the tape was not
child pornography and the seizure was illegal. For a variety of technical
reasons he ruled that the neither the police nor DA could be held liable
for punative damages for the seizure of the tape from the stores.

  Last week the Oklahoma City council members approved a payment of
$575,000 to pay for the LEGAL fees of the stores who defended the tape.
The loser was responsible for the legal fees. $400,000 of this will come
from the city which will now have to have a property tax assesment to pay
their idiot police & DA. Some angry people have suggested that Oklahoman's
for Children and Families (OCAF) the group started all this should pay for this.
but they of course will not. As part of the settlement the City has agreed
to put into place new procedures for determining pornography and seizing
tapes to make sure this does not happen again. OCAF objected to this but
the city council refused to hear them.

  The other $175,000 in damages will be paid by the office of district attorney
Bob Macy. Macy applied for state funds to cover this. They turned him down.
Please remember both Macy and the judge who issued the order that the tape
was child pornograpy were re-elected without opposition in the last

 Most importantly for now, IT IS NOT OVER. The second part of the case
which involves the man who is suing the police for seizing the tape from
his house is SCHEDULED for trail on June 15. Right now the judge has ruled
that he can only sue for damages under the VIDEO PRIVACY PROTECTION  law (
the bork law) which allows for
a $2500 dollor fine. I had a nice chat with the ACLU lawyer and their a
still a lot of unresolved issues in the case. The judge has ruled that the
case will basically only involve the whether the tape was given up
"voluntarily" as the police claim or under threat of arrest as the
plaintiff claims. As of now their will be no questions of the first
amendment or child pornography, but it is likely that these will be brought
up on appeal. Trust me this is going to keep going for a long time and
hopefully in the end we will have a major first amendment video precedent


Jessica Rosner

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