Court: No right to copy court reporter’s recordings

Trial Coverage

Georgia’s highest court says the makers of a popular podcast series do not have the right to copy audio recordings made during a murder trial by a court reporter.

The second season of the “Undisclosed” podcast featured the case of Joey Watkins, who was convicted of murder and other crimes for his role in the January 2000 slaying of Isaac Dawkins in northwest Georgia. He was sentenced to serve life plus five years in prison.

Undisclosed LLC argued the recordings are court records, and rules governing the courts provide for the right to copy court records.
 
Georgia Supreme Court Justice Nels Peterson wrote in an opinion published Monday that, under common law, court records include only materials filed with the court. The recordings at issue weren’t filed with the court.

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