Sealing of Reno Murder Defendant's Wrongful Death Case Opposed

RENO (AP) - A lawyer for the Reno Gazette-Journal contends a state judge's decision to seal the wrongful death civil case against former Reno pawn shop owner Darren Mack violates the First Amendment.

In his motion filed yesterday, attorney Scott Glogovac said the public has a right to know how the courts are functioning.

Without a request from either side, Senior Judge Noel Manoukian ordered the case filed by Charla Mack's estate to be sealed in order to protect Darren Mack's Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

Darren Mack has been charged with murder in the June 2006 stabbing death of his estranged wife, Charla, and attempted murder in the sniper-style shooting of the judge who was handling their divorce, Chuck Weller.

He has pleaded not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity. Trial is set for October first.

Manoukian says he could not comment on pending cases. He was assigned the civil case after Washoe County district judges were disqualified from all Mack cases due to a potential conflict of interest.

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