(CBS/KHOU/AP) LIBERTY, Texas - A Texas judge has issued a sweeping gag order in the case of the 18 men and boys accused of gang raping an 11-year-old girl, barring anyone who could be called to testify at the trial from talking to the news media.
Liberty County District Judge Mark Morefield granted the prosecution's request for the gag order during a Tuesday hearing. The order bars the defendants, attorneys and investigators from disseminating information about the upcoming trial.
It also bars all potential "witnesses" from discussing the case, including parents, siblings, relatives, and foster parents of the parties involved.
Houston Chronicle attorney Joe Larsen objected to the inclusion of unnamed potential "witnesses." He argues that the order is too broad and effectively gags the public from discussing the case.
The girl, who police have not named, told investigators she was raped at an abandoned mobile home in Cleveland, Texas, on Nov. 28.
Indictments in the case say there also were attacks on Sept. 15 and Oct. 25. Each time, at least two individuals were allegedly involved. The indictments say the girl was attacked by at least three people in November.
Police say the gang rape was captured on cell phone video, according to a search warrant affidavit obtained by CBS affiliate KHOU.