Town Heals and Remembers

Filtering Facts to Protect Privacy

By Doug Greene
|  Wednesday, Oct 30, 2013  |  Updated 3:37 PM EDT
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Filtering Facts to Protect Privacy

AP

A bus traveling from Newtown, Conn., to Monroe stops in front of 26 angels along the roadside on the first day of classes for Sandy Hook Elementary School students after the Dec. 14 shooting, in Monroe, Conn., Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013.

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Sitting somberly across from a task force of state government officials and reporters, Bill Sherlach and Nicole Hockley called for a balance between victims' rights and the public's right to know what happened at the Newtown massacre and other high-profile crimes.

"I do believe it may have to be by a case-by-case basis relative to the privacy of those individuals involved," said Bill Sherlach, whose wife, Mary Sherlach, a school psychologist at Sandy Hook Elementary School, was killed in the shooting.

In the case of Newtown, said Nicole Hockley, whose 6-year-old son Dylan died in the shootings, officials should keep secret crime scene photos and 911 recordings.

"Whether there is the sound of people getting killed in the background, that's impactful," she said. "Whether there are visuals of people being killed, that's impactful and hurtful and an invasion of privacy.  I think there are filters that you can put in place."

Sherlach and Hockley said they did not volunteer to be victims and they couldn't help the task force figure out how to strike the balance for all cases.

"We're all wrestling with this word balance," said Don DeCesare, a radio station owner and co-chair of the task force. "How to balance what the public should know against what the public does not need to know."

Before the task force comes up with recommendations, the police report into the Newtown case is to be released.  Hockney said she was preparing herself for that. 

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