Cameras Will Stay in Illinois Courtrooms

Mar 2, 2016
Originally published on February 22, 2016 4:28 pm

Television coverage of court cases is now a permanent part of Illinois' legal landscape after an order Monday from the Illinois Supreme Court.


Cameras were first allowed as an experiment four years ago. The courthouse in Rockford was among the early adopters.

That’s where Chief Judge Joe McGraw handles criminal cases. He's had first-hand experience with TV coverage.

"I think knowing the camera is there, you sit up straighter, you speak more clearly. you do a better job explaining why you’re doing what you’re doing. And you should be doing that anyway, but I think just having that camera present there … makes all of us do just a little better job."

Over the last four years, the Illinois Supreme Court has gradually allowed cameras into 15 of the state's 24 jurisdictions, including the largest, Cook County.

Chief Justice Rita Garman says she expects broadcast coverage will eventually spread statewide.

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