Partial stay granted on Tucson suspect tapes

PHOENIX (AP) — A federal appeals court has imposed a partial stay on a lower-court judge’s order to distribute to prosecutors the videotaped psychological evaluations of the suspect in the Tucson shooting rampage.

Jared Lee Loughner is undergoing a mental competency exam at a federal medical facility in Missouri. His lawyers say providing prosecutors with the recordings would violate their client’s right to a fair trial.

The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco issued a temporary stay Friday, but only to the extent that the videotapes should be withheld from all attorneys until the judges can review the matter.

Loughner has pleaded not guilty to federal charges stemming from the Jan. 8 shootings that killed six people and wounded 13, including U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

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