A state appeals court has upheld an earlier ruling imposing a gag order on attorneys, police and witnesses in a kidnapping case involving an 8-year-old Vallejo girl.
The Court of Appeal in San Francisco last week said it would uphold Solano County Superior Court Judge Allan Carter’s ruling to protect the rights of defendant Curtis Dean Anderson.
That decision was contingent on Carter modifying his order to allow public statements by potential witnesses who have not been subpoenaed.
Anderson is charged with molesting and kidnapping the girl as she was walking home from school. She escaped two days later from her abductor’s car in Santa Clara after freeing herself from shackles.
The San Francisco Chronicle, the Sacramento Bee and the Vallejo Times-Herald all challenged the judge’s restrictions, saying they interfered with news coverage. They also argued it was unnecessary to protect the defendant’s rights.
Anderson’s attorney requested the gag order after police told the media they were investigating Anderson for possible connections to other kidnappings, including the disappearance of a 7-year-old Xiana Fairchild girl last December.