The assorted departments that keep Superior Court of Fulton County, Ga., running are familiar with the media circus that follows big cases. Trials for the likes of Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis, longtime fugitive James Sullivan and former Black Panther Jamil Al-Amin drew network and cable-news camera crews and gavel-to-gavel coverage by Court TV.
But the trial of accused courthouse shooter Brian G. Nichols has pushed demand for media accommodation to new heights, and coverage of the proceedings — estimated to run for six months from jury selection to sentencing — is expected to offer unprecedented challenges in terms of security, courthouse access and plain old elbow room. In fact, large portions of the dining rooms set aside for jurors and judges may be turned into temporary TV engineering booths and impromptu newsrooms for the duration of the trial, which is set to begin in January.
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