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Judge denies motion by newspapers in Nunn case

Fayette Circuit Judge Pamela Goodwine overruled a motion Tuesday filed by attorneys for the Courier-Journal newspaper in Louisville and the Lexington Herald-Leader to vacate an agreed protective order in the murder case of former state Rep. Steve Nunn.

The protective order between the defense and prosecution pertains to items exchanged as part of the discovery process in the case — material not in the court file.

Jon Fleischaker, representing the newspapers, told the judge that the order was "also an agreed gag order."

Goodwine said that was not the intent and that the court had not ordered any of the parties in the case not to talk to the media. She said that the agreed protective order pertained to the discovery process, and that the process was in its infancy. She said the newspapers' motion was premature and that the newspapers had no right to have access to discovery material that had not been entered into the court record.

Also Tuesday, Goodwine set a Feb. 18 hearing date on a defense motion for discovery. Fayette Commonwealth's Attorney Ray Larson said there were more than 2,200 pages and compact discs of discovery material. Warren Scoville, Nunn's attorney, said he would "give it a try" to have read and studied the material by then.

Also, a status hearing set for Feb. 12 was taken off the docket after Scoville told the judge that Nunn had not yet been sent to the Kentucky Correctional Psychiatric Center in LaGrange for a mental evaluation to see whether he was competent to assist in his own defense.

Nunn is accused of killing his former fiancée, Amanda Ross, 29, who was shot to death Sept. 11 outside her Lexington home. Nunn has pleaded not guilty to murder and to violating an emergency protective order.