- Associated Press - Thursday, December 17, 2015

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - California jail guards accused of murder in the beating death of an inmate are trying to bar the public and press from an upcoming preliminary hearing.

The Mercury News reports (http://bayareane.ws/1Rr0Lye ) that the three Santa Clara County guards say adverse publicity has already threatened their chances for a fair trial. In court documents released this week, they argue that allowing the public to attend the Feb. 29 hearing or view the transcript would negatively influence prospective jurors.

It is unusual to move to exclude the public this early in a case.

Correctional officers Jereh Lubrin, Rafael Rodriguez and Matthew Farris are charged with the Aug. 26 killing of mentally ill inmate Michael Tyree and assaulting another inmate.

A hearing on the motion to bar the public is scheduled for Feb. 16.

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Information from: San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News, http://www.mercurynews.com

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