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Brief of the Appellant (Associated Press), Associated Press v. Canterbury, No. 34768 (W. Va. Supreme Court)

Brief of the Appellant (Associated Press), Associated Press v. Canterbury, No. 34768 (W. Va. Supreme Court)

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Published by J Cox

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Published by: J Cox on Nov 15, 2009
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11/15/2009

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IN THE SUPREME COURT OF APPEALS OF
AT
CHARLESTONTHE ASSOCIATED PRESS,
Appellant,
v.
STEVEN D. CANTERBURY,
Administrative Director
of
the
No. 34768West Virginia Supreme Court
of
Appeals,Appellee.
APPELLANT'S BRIEF
Rudolph
L.
DiTrapano, Esq. (WV Bar
No.1
024)Sean
P.
McGinley, Esq. (WV
Bar
No. 5836)
DITRAPANO BARRETT
&
DIPIERO, PLLC
604 Virginia Street EastCharleston, WV 25301304-342-0133Patrick
C.
McGinley, Esq.
(WV
Bar No. 5620)737 South Hills DriveMorgantown, WV 26505
Counsel
for
Appellant The Associated Press
 
TABLE
OF
CONTENTSTABLE
OF
CONTENTS .............................................................................................................
1
I POINTS AND AUTHORITIES RELIED ON ..............................................................iii
II
THE
KIND
OF
PROCEEDING
AND
NATURE
OF
THE
RULING IN THE
LOWER
TRIBUNAL ........................................................................................................ 1
III
STATEMENT
OF
FACTS ..............................................................................................
.3
IV
ASSIGNMENT
OFERRORS
AND THE MANNER
IN
WHICH
THEY WEREDECIDED
IN
THE
LOWER
TRIBUNAL ..................................................................... 5V DISCUSSION
OF
LAW .................................................................................................... 5A STANDARD
OF
APPELLATE REVIEW ......................................................... 6B
THE
CIRCUIT
COURT
DID NOT LIBERALLY CONSTRUE WVFOIA'SDISCLOSURE MANDATE NOR DID
IT PROPERLY
APPLY WVFOIA'SBURDEN
OF PROOF TO
THE
EIGHT
(8)
WITHHELD
EMAILS ............... 7C WVFOIA REQUIRES PUBLIC RECORDS
BE
DISCLOSED UNLESS
THEY
FALL
WITHIN
ENUMERATED EXEMPTIONS ............................... 9
1
THE
WVFOIA
DEFINITION
OF "PUBLIC
RECORD"
.................... 92
THE
CIRCUIT
COURT DID NOT FIND ANY WVFOIAEXEMPTIONS APPLICABLE
TO THE WITHHELD
E-MAILS .....................................................................................................
10
3
THE
CIRCUIT
COURT ERRED IN
HOLDING
THAT PUBLICRECORDS
(THE
WITHHELD E-MAILS
)WERERENDERED
NONE
OF
THE
PUBLIC'S BUSINESS BY VIRTUE
OF
JUSTICEMAYNARD'S SUBSEQUENT DECISION
TO
RECUSE HIMSELF
FROM
CASES INVOLVING MASSEY
ENERGy
.................................................................................................
12
D
THE LEGITIMATE
PUBLIC INTEREST IN DISCLOSURE OF THE
WITHHELD
E-MAILS ......................................................................................
15
1
THERE
IS LEGITIMATE PUBLIC
INTEREST IN
INFORMATIONRELATING
TO
WHETHER
THE COURT'S
RECUSAL RULE 29
EFFECTIVELY
ELIMINATES JUDICIAL CONFLICTS OF
INTEREST
..............................................................................................
19
-1-
 
2
THERE IS A LEGITIMATE PUBLIC INTEREST INDETERMINING THAT A JUSTICE OF THE WEST VIRGINIASUPREME COURT ACTED IN ACCORD WITH THE CODE
OF
JUDICIAL
CONDUCT .......................................................................... 24
VI
CONCLUSION ...............................................................................................................
29
PRAYER FOR
RELIEF .............. , ............................................................................................
30
-11-

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