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LOCKDOWN ORDERED FOR CONNECTICUT LAPTOP HARTFORD, Conn. — Westport, Conn., divorce lawyer Nancy Segore-Freshman said her client, a nursery school teacher, is afraid to even touch her computer, for fear of being in contempt of court. Greenwich, Conn., urologist Jeffrey Ranta is convinced there’s something somewhere in his wife’s laptop that would help his divorce case. And now he may have the chance to prove it. Stamford Superior Court Judge Kevin Tierney recently took the highly unusual step of ordering Mary Ranta to stop using her laptop altogether and immediately turn it over to the court clerk’s office. It’s the first computer seizure he’s ever ordered, the judge confirmed in an interview last week. Tierney said his goal was to preserve electronic data for discovery. But Mary Ranta and Segore-Freshman contend the order is overbroad and burdensome. To appease the wife, Tierney directed Jeffrey Ranta to purchase a duplicate computer for her, along with copies of all the software programs currently on the laptop. Mary Ranta, in turn, must make a list of all the applications she has on the computer. But even turning her laptop on to find out the names of the software programs could potentially subject her to Tierney’s wrath. The judge’s four-page order demands she “stop using, accessing, turning on, powering, copying, deleting, removing or uninstalling any programs, files or folders, or booting up” her year-old Gateway. — The Connecticut Law Tribune

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