Washington Law Review


Susan Ward


In State v. Rinaldo, the Washington Supreme Court extended the news reporter's qualified common law privilege to criminal cases. This extension will adequately protect most confidential information held by reporters. In some cases, however, defendants will be able to defeat the qualified privilege announced in Rinaldo. The Washington courts should then construe article 1, section 5 of the Washington State Constitution to require in camera inspection of the information sought. The trial judge should order disclosure only upon concluding that the defendant's interest in obtaining the information outweighs the news reporter's interest in confidentiality.

First Page