On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court reinforced the right to public criminal trials. The ruling held jury voir dire proceedings should be open to defendants and to the public.
The Presley v. Georgia ruling (unsigned 7-2) also said that a trial judge has a duty to seek alternatives to preserve an open courtroom even when there do not appear to be enough seats for the public.
The Court returned to its decisions based on both the First and Sixth Amendments that have declared open courts, as well as the Constitution. The Court majority stated “trial courts are obligated to take every reasonable measure to accommodate public attendance at criminal trials.”
The Supreme Court reiterated it’s holding that a judge cannot throw the public out of a criminal trial due to an inconvenience.