BOISE, Idaho — A federal judge has ordered mediation between Idaho and more than a dozen news organizations challenging the state’s policy limiting public access to executions.
The order was handed down Thursday by U.S. District Judge Edward J. Lodge, two days after The Associated Press and 16 other news organizations filed a lawsuit seeking to force officials to let witnesses view executions from start to finish.
The suit contends the media and other witnesses have a 1st Amendment right to view all steps of lethal injection executions.
Currently, Idaho Department of Correction policy blocks from view the first steps of the process, including insertion of the IV needles into the condemned inmate.
Lodge’s order requires the parties to enter mediation on or before June 1 under supervision of Magistrate Judge Candy Dale.