Sheen’s attorneys trying to avoid ‘media circus’ in Aspen |

Sheen’s attorneys trying to avoid ‘media circus’ in Aspen

Carolyn Sackariason
Aspen Correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN, Colorado – Charlie Sheen’s domestic violence case has resulted in limited public access to the Pitkin County Courthouse on Jan. 20, when the actor and his wife are scheduled to appear.

Sheen and his wife Brooke Sheen, will be present for a motions hearing seeking to lift the protection order that prohibits them from having contact with each other.

Local officials are preparing for significant media and community interest in the case, and say the 120-old courthouse isn’t designed to accommodate large amounts of people.

The Aspen Police Department issued a press release Thursday stating that admittance to the Pitkin County Courthouse will be restricted.

On Wednesday, Sheen’s Aspen attorney, Richie Cummins, submitted a memo to the Pitkin County Clerks office suggesting that only one reporter be allowed in the courtroom and then “pool,” or share, the information to other media outlets.

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“Obviously both Ms. Sheen and Mr. Estevez do not wish this to be a media circus and would as much as possible, like their privacy respected understanding that they are celebrity figures so there is a public interest and the necessity of media coverage,” Cummins wrote.

Sheen’s hearing will be limited to 60 people, the maximum for the city’s fire code. The county court’s capacity will be limited and the general public won’t be allowed in the courthouse without a legitimate reason, according to the press release.

The ratio of general public to press seats is yet to be determined and will be at the discretion of Ninth Judicial District Court Judge James Boyd. General public seats will be available on a first come, first serve basis. Press member seats will be available by lottery.

Earlier this week, a motion was filed by KUSA-TV, a Denver-based NBC affiliate, seeking authority to use a television camera in the Aspen courtroom. KUSA is the first media outlet to formally seek expanded media coverage in the Sheen case.

KUSA’s motion says that it would broadcast the proceedings at a location outside the courthouse, meaning the press would not have to attend the hearing in person.

To gain entry inside the courtroom attendees must leave all bags outside the courthouse building and must pass through a metal detector. The approval of video or camera equipment is yet to be determined and will be at the discretion of Boyd, according to the press release.

The Galena Street Circle, just outside the Pitkin County Courthouse, will be closed to through traffic and general parking. Satellite truck parking will be will be available by lottery, held Jan. 18.

Sheen was arrested in Aspen on Christmas Day on allegations of felony menacing, domestic violence and other charges. Brooke Sheen told police he put a knife to her throat and threatened to kill her. Sheen denies threatening his wife with a knife.

The 44-year-old actor stars in “Two and a Half Men” on CBS.

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