The Oklahoma Supreme Court ruled Monday The Oklahoman can seek access to mayoral candidate Ed Shadid's secret divorce records by filing a motion with his divorce judge.
In one of the sealed filings, Shadid invoked his Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination.
“All of this current litigation and expense demonstrates the very reason why courts should rarely take the drastic measure of sealing public records,” Justice Steven Taylor wrote in a concurring opinion.
“After the records are sealed, those seeking to protect the public interest are required to go to great time and expense to view what were once public records. This issue should be resolved by a hearing forthwith. That was this trial judge's original plan,” Taylor wrote.
Shadid, a Ward 2 city councilman, is seeking to keep his divorce records secret.
“We will file a motion as early as Tuesday afternoon with Oklahoma County Special Judge Lisa Hammond to request the opening of the divorce records. We believe the interest of the public will prevail over secrecy,” said Kelly Dyer Fry, editor of The Oklahoman and vice president of news for OPUBCO Communications Group.
The Oklahoman first asked the judge by a letter in September to unseal the records. Shadid in November asked the Supreme Court to block the judge from holding a scheduled hearing.
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