Sunday afternoon Judge Ben Brooks issued an order prohibiting all persons involved in the prosecution and defense of Marco Perez from making any public comments.
Referred to as “Extrajudicial Statements”, the order bars comment to the public or news media outlets by attorneys and law enforcement personnel from:
- Statements that relate to the character, credibility, reputation or criminal record of a party, or witness, or the expected testimony of a party or witness;
- The existence or the contents of any alleged confessions, admissions, or statements given by the Defendant or any suspect, or that person’s alleged failure to make a statement;
- The performance or results of any alleged examination or test, the alleged refusal or failure of a person to submit to an examination or test, or the identity or nature of physical evidence expected to be presented;
- Any opinion as to the guilt or innocence of the Defendant or any other suspect in this case—except that the parties may confirm the express verbatim contents of any charge, grand jury indictment, or responsive plea or defense;
- As to the attorneys involved in this case for the State and for the Defendant, information that the attorney knows or reasonably should know is likely to be inadmissible as evidence in the trial.
The order does allow attorneys to make general statements regarding:
- The general nature of the charge or defense;
- Information contained in a public record or Court Order;
- The scheduling or result of any court proceeding;
- The identity, occupation and family status of the Defendant;
- The fact, time and place of arrest.
Judge Brooks states in the order that it is intended to allow the defendant to have “a fair trial pursuant to our established rules of procedure and evidence” , to ensure that the victims interests be protected and that the prospective jurors will not be “exposed to pre-trial publicity” that would “make it difficult to fair and unbiased”.
Perez is due in court Tuesday afternoon for his preliminary hearing.