COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio Supreme Court agreed to hear oral arguments in a case filed by news media groups seeking school records about the man who gunned down nine people in Dayton last August before being killed by police.
The court made the announcement Monday. It also said the media groups and Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, who is supporting release of the records, will share time for arguments. No date was immediately set.
The media groups, including The Associated Press, argue the student records could provide information on whether authorities properly handled early warning signs from gunman Connor Betts.
The Bellbrook-Sugarcreek Local Schools district is fighting the release of Betts’ records, arguing that state and federal law protecting student privacy bar the release of confidential information without consent. Its attorneys say there is no case law to interpret the statutes to say protection ends upon death.
Attorneys for the media groups say nothing in the laws prevents the information’s release.
Betts was killed by police 32 seconds after he opened fire Aug. 4 in Dayton’s crowded Oregon District entertainment area. Armed with an AR-15 style gun with an extended ammunition magazine, Betts still killed nine, including his sister, and injured dozens more.
The Supreme Court took the case after an appeals court ruled in favor of the district and its denial of access to Betts’ high school files.