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11/06/89 In Re Jodi Summerville

November 6, 1989

IN RE JODI SUMMERVILLE, A MINOR (THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF


APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, FIRST DISTRICT, FIRST DIVISION

Illinois, Petitioner-Appellee, v.

Jodi Summerville, a Minor, by her Next Friend Patrick T.

Murphy, Public Guardian of Cook County,

Respondent-Appellant)

547 N.E.2d 513, 190 Ill. App. 3d 1072, 138 Ill. Dec. 346 1989.IL.1748

Appeal from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. Walter Williams, Judge, presiding.

APPELLATE Judges:

JUSTICE O'CONNOR delivered the opinion of the court. CAMPBELL AND BUCKLEY, JJ., concur.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE O'CONNOR

Patrick Murphy, as public guardian (the Public Guardian), appeals a protective order forbidding public Discussion of a child custody case and a subsequent ruling denying his motion to lift that order. The Public Guardian argues that the order violates the first amendment and is vague and overbroad. For the reasons below, we hold that the protective order violates the first amendment.

Jodi Summerville was born on June 29, 1986. When Jodi's parents could no longer care for her, they left Jodi with an aunt, but failed to provide for the infant's proper medical care. On October 20, 1986, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services took Jodi into protective custody and was appointed temporary custodian. In June 1987, DCFS placed Jodi with foster parents Donna and Richard Appel. In June 1988, DCFS moved Jodi to the care of her maternal great uncle, the Reverend Zonis L. Dabney. The Appels objected to the move on the grounds that it was racially motivated: the Appels are white and the Dabneys are black. Jodi is biracial. The Public Guardian was appointed Jodi's guardian ad litem, and on September 19, 1988, the court ruled that Jodi should be left with the Dabneys to facilitate returning Jodi to her mother.

In a progress report dated November 17, 1988, the trial court expressed concern that Jodi's name and face had appeared on a television news report. The record shows that Mrs. Appel had permitted Jodi's face to appear on television, but she blamed DCFS for publishing Jodi's name. The trial court directed the Public Guardian to draft an order prohibiting communication with the media. The court then entered an order that stated:

"All parties and all attorneys representing them are prohibited from communicating or discussing matters relating to this matter to any representatives of the media. This order is entered pursuant to Section 1-5(6) of the Juvenile Court Act." See Ill. Rev. Stat. 1987, ch. 37, par. 801-5(6).

The next day, November 18, the Public Guardian presented his order, which the trial court entered (the protective ...


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