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Williams v. Tharp

Supreme Court of Wyoming

January 30, 2017

BRUCE B. WILLIAMS, Appellant (Plaintiff),
v.
TERRILL R. THARP, as Circuit Court Judge, Appellee (Defendant).

         Appeal from the District Court of Campbell County The Honorable John R. Perry, Judge

          Representing Appellant: Pro se.

          Representing Appellee: Peter K. Michael, Attorney General; Ryan T. Schelhaas, Deputy Attorney General; Mackenzie Williams, Senior Assistant Attorney General; Jonathan C. Coppom, Assistant Attorney General.

          Before BURKE, C.J., and HILL, DAVIS, and KAUTZ, JJ., and LAVERY, D.J.

          LAVERY, District Judge.

         [¶1] Mr. Williams asked the Circuit Court for the Sixth Judicial District for a copy of part of a presentence investigation report in a criminal case. The circuit court denied his request. He brought a petition for a writ of mandamus asking the district court to require that the circuit court release the records. The district court dismissed the case. He appeals, claiming a constitutional right as a member of the public to access these records. Because he did not present his constitutional arguments to the district court, we affirm.

         ISSUES

         [¶2] Mr. Williams states the issue on appeal as follows verbatim:

1. Has the 6th Judicial District and the Circuit Court for Campbell County violated my rights to:
(1) The U.S. Constitutions First Amendment right to free speech and Wyoming's Article 1, Section 20. "Freedom of speech and press; libel; truth a defense." and/or
(2) The U.S. Constitutions Sixth Amendment right to criminals having a ". . . public trial"? (Emphasis mine) and/or
(3) The Wyoming State Constitution Article 1, Section 8. "Courts open to all; suits against state." By denying me a copy of the presentence report in Criminal Case No. 6949 State Of Wyoming vs Rhoda R. Steel because they claim the information was gathered during a presentence report by the Wyoming Department of Probation and Parole?

         The circuit court restates the same issue and raises two additional issues:

I. An appellant generally cannot raise an argument for the first time on appeal. Bruce Williams did not raise a Sixth Amendment argument at the district court. Should ...

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