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Overbey v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore

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  1. Newsgathering
The Reporters Committee and a media coalition filed an amicus brief in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals supporting The…

The Reporters Committee and a media coalition filed an amicus brief in the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals supporting The Baltimore Brew, an online media outlet.  The news organization is challenging a practice of the Baltimore Police Department of requiring “non-disparagement” clauses in all settlements involving claims of police misconduct.  The district court concluded that the Baltimore Brew did not have standing to challenge that practice.  The Reporters Committee’s amicus brief in the Fourth Circuit argues that the Baltimore Brew, under longstanding constitutional principles, does have standing to challenge the City’s practice of imposing what are effectively gag orders on victims of police misconduct who would otherwise publicly share their stories, and highlights the strong public policy interest in favor of public access to settlement agreements entered into by public entities.