U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

AP reporter subpoenaed for second time in Idaho criminal case

Incident Details

Date of Incident
May 27, 2021
Boise, Idaho

Subpoena/Legal Order

Legal Orders
Legal Order Target
Legal Order Venue
May 27, 2021

Associated Press reporter Keith Ridler was subpoenaed on May 27, 2021, by anti-government activist Ammon Bundy, who was seeking Ridler’s reporting materials and testimony in a criminal case against Bundy in Idaho, according to an AP spokesperson. A judge quashed the subpoena.

The subpoena was filed two months after Ada County Magistrate Judge David Manweiler quashed a previous similar subpoena from Bundy.

Bundy sought the information in a criminal case against him stemming from protests he led against COVID-19 measures at the Idaho Statehouse in August.

Ridler reported on and photographed Bundy’s arrests, according to the AP. The journalist was one of several people Bundy subpoenaed who were at the Statehouse at the time.

Bundy was set to go to trial in March, but the case was delayed when he missed his trial, and was subsequently arrested, for refusing to comply with court rules to wear a mask due to COVID-19 precautions.

At that time, Manweiler sided with the AP, quashing Bundy’s subpoena for Ridler’s testimony and reporting materials, the AP reported.

Bundy again filed a subpoena for Ridler’s testimony and reporting materials in late May. The news organization filed a motion to quash on June 8, according to an AP spokesperson. The spokesperson confirmed that the judge quashed the subpoena.

On July 1, Bundy was found guilty of trespassing. A spokesperson for the AP declined further comment. The Tracker was not able to reach Bundy for comment.

The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker catalogues press freedom violations in the United States. Email tips to [email protected].