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Fox News reporter awaits N.Y. top court's decision on subpoena

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  1. Protecting Sources and Materials
New York's highest court is now considering whether the state's strong shield law will apply to a Fox News reporter…

New York's highest court is now considering whether the state's strong shield law will apply to a Fox News reporter subpoenaed to testify in a Colorado court about her confidential sources in the James Holmes theater shooting case.

Reporter Jana Winter, who lives and works in New York, went before the New York Court of Appeals on Tuesday to fight the subpoena requested by Holmes' attorneys ordering her to reveal her sources in an exclusive story she published in 2012 about a notebook belonging to the alleged gunman. The subpoena was issued in Colorado but had to be served on Winter in New York, and the New York shield law provides greater protection for reporters than the Colorado law does. Winter is arguing that the New York courts should apply New York's protections.

"It doesn't matter where the communication took place," Winter's attorney, Christopher Handman, told FoxNews.com after the hearing. "New York's shield law is designed to protect New York journalists when they report on matters of public concern throughout the nation."

The Reporters Committee wrote in a friend-of-the-court brief in August that the court was wrong not to consider New York's shield law when it applied to serving subpoena requests from out-of-state. The Reporters Committee had also filed an affidavit in support of Winter before the Colorado court.