Prosecution Attempts Gag Order for Teen in NRA shirt controversy - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Prosecution Attempts Gag Order for Teen in NRA shirt controversy

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The case of Jared Marcum, the Logan County teen suspended from school, arrested and charged with obstructing an officer after refusing to change out of his NRA T-shirt at school, has taken another turn.

Marcum was back at the Logan County Courthouse June 24, two weeks before he was scheduled to appear.

The reason? An emergency gag order hearing requested by prosecutors Christopher White and Sabrina Deskins.

"We were here because the prosecution filed a motion for a gag order," said Ben White, Marcum's attorney. "My opinion is because, seemingly, they want to take it out of the court of public opinion."

Prosecutors said they wanted to stop White, Marcum, and Marcum's fathern Allen Lardieri, from sharing their story with the press, claiming the gag order would serve Marcum's better interest.

"These are the same individuals that are trying to prosecute him, so as far as them knowing what is in his better interest, I have a lot of questions about that," Lardieri said.

A petition to intervene in the gag order hearing on behalf of WOWK-TV and the free press was prepared. Before WOWK reporter Charlo Greene could deliver the petition to the court clerk, she was asked twice to leave the courthouse by a bailiff who told her Judge Eric O'Briant, who presided over Marcum's case, had requested she be removed from the courthouse.

Greene then was told she would be arrested and charged with obstructing an officer if she did not comply with the bailiff's orders.

Prosecutors withdrew their petition for a gag order on the condition that Marcum's parents waive the case's confidentiality that keeps the prosecution from speaking about the case because Marcum is a minor.

Marcum is facing the possibility of a year in jail or juvenile confinement and a fine of as much as a $500 for his obstruction charge. Police have said he was charged with obstructing an officer because he would not stop talking when they arrived at Logan County Middle School to arrest him April 18. He is expected to return to court for a hearing July 11. White said he would continue to work to have Marcum's charges dropped.