TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) - Media outlets asked a judge Monday to unseal the divorce case of Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley and first lady Dianne Bentley.
A motion filed by a group of Alabama television stations and newspapers said the divorce, filed by the first lady in Tuscaloosa County, was sealed last month following a hurried hearing held without notice to the public.
The motion said the divorce is newsworthy and a fair subject for reporting by the media. Allowing the case to remain closed promotes the spread of rumors, media organizations argued.
Attorneys for the governor and first lady didn’t immediately respond to messages seeking comment on the request. The case was initially sealed because of a joint request made by the Bentleys.
In seeking a divorce, Dianne Bentley said the couple’s 50-year marriage had suffered an irretrievable breakdown.
The motion was filed by media organizations including: Consolidated Publishing Co. Inc., publisher of The Anniston Star and Daily Home newspaper in Talladega; CA Media Holdings Inc., publisher of The Gadsden Times; Sinclair Television Stations, which operates ABC 33/40 in Birmingham; Tennessee Valley Printing Inc., publisher of The Decatur Daily and the TimesDaily newspaper in Florence; Tuscaloosa News Inc., publisher of The Tuscaloosa News; WBRC-TV in Birmingham; WAFF-TV in Huntsville; and WSFA-TV in Montgomery.
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