Inquiries to:

Daniel J. Lehmann
Public information officer
Room 2514-A
Voice: 312-435-5607
Fax:     312-554-8470
daniel_lehmann@ilnd.uscourts.gov

September 20, 2005

NEWS RELEASE

UPDATED GUIDELINES FOR THE MEDIA COVERING
UNITED STATES v. WARNER & RYAN

COURTROOM SEATING: 

        Beginning Tuesday, September 20, and continuing day to day, the court will conduct interviews of potential jurors in Courtroom 2119. Five benches in the gallery are reserved for the media during jury selection and trial. Upon entering the courtroom, they are the benches on the left side.

        A row of chairs has been set up between the defense table and the first bench. The chairs are reserved for family members of the defendants.

        The first bench is for courtroom sketch artists. The major local television stations (2, 5, 7, 9, 11, 32, 44, 66 & CLTV) will be allotted one spot each; others will have to negotiate with these stations for sketches, or to substitute artists. If sketch artists are not present at the start of a court session, the bench will be open to others from the media.

        The second bench will provide seating for news organizations (one representative each) that have reporters assigned to the courthouse on a full-time basis: Associated Press, Bloomberg News, Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune, Daily Southtown, City News and WBBM-AM. The third and fourth benches will provide seating for the above mentioned TV stations, radio stations WBEZ-FM, WGN-AM, WLS-AM and the Illinois Radio Network, the Daily Herald, Copley News Service and the Small Newspaper Group (again, one representative each). The fifth bench will be open to all other reporters, on a first-come basis. If the remaining benches for spectators on the right side of the gallery have not filled by the start of a court session, reporters may sit there.

        If these measures prove inadequate to assure appropriate media access, the court will consider assigning credentials and reserving seats for credentialed reporters only.

OVERFLOW IN COURTROOM 2568:

        An audio feed of the proceedings in Courtroom 2119 will be provided in Courtroom 2568 (or another, designated room) if needed to accommodate media and spectators. Court security officers will be solely responsible for determining when Courtroom 2119 is full. All rules that apply to the main courtroom, including those concerning electronic equipment, will also apply to the overflow courtroom. Court security officers will be present at all times when Courtroom 2568 is in use.

ACCESS TO COURT DOCUMENTS:

        Copies of any substantive rulings in the case, 02CR506, will be accessible at no cost through the home page of the U.S. District Court, www.ilnd.uscourts.gov, once the jury is impaneled. Exhibits may also be posted at the courtís discretion. The entry will be marked "USA v. Warner & Ryan," under "Whatís New" on the courtís home page.

INTERVIEWS, TV TRUCKS:

        News conferences, interviews and live reports are permitted in the ground-floor lobby media area only. The lobby is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. Parking of equipment trucks is the responsibility of the media.

PRESS ROOM 2144:

        A press room is located on the 21st floor of the courthouse. Nine desks there are assigned to reporters of various news organizations that cover the courthouse on a full-time basis. Additional tables and chairs will be set up to accommodate other journalists. If such accommodations prove inadequate, other options will be explored.

ELECTRONIC EQUIPMENT:

        Tape recorders and cameras are prohibited on any floor of the courthouse above the lobby. Other electronic devices, such as cell phones, pagers and laptop computers, are subject to inspection each time they are brought to the courthouse. Cell phones and pagers must be turned off or set on vibrate and may not be used to photograph or record the proceedings. Laptops computers may not be used in any courtroom.

CONTACTS:

        If you have any questions about these guidelines, please contact Daniel J. Lehmann, public information officer, at 312-435-5607.