IRWIN CO., GA (WALB) - Former Dougherty District Attorney and Legal analyst Ken Hodges said after studying the modified gag order "She is trying to keep the jury panel from being tainted by evidence that looks like he's guilty."
Soon after Ryan Duke was arrested and charged in the death and disappearance of Tara Grinstead, Judge Melanie Cross issued a gag order. Media companies challenged the order, saying it was too vague.
Late Friday afternoon the Judge modified that order, clarifying that until the case goes to court, the prosecutors, past and current law enforcement that have worked on the case, and defense attorneys for Ryan Duke cannot release any information.
Ken Hodges said after studying the order that the Judge is trying to limit media coverage to make sure Duke receives a fair trial, but he thinks the overwhelming coverage for more than a decade is too much.
Hodges said "It's gotten so much attention recently that I don't think no matter how pro active Judge Cross is going to try to be, that she can keep this case in Irwin County."
The gag order now allows Grinstead's family, and potential witnesses to talk about the case.