RALEIGH, N.C. — A North Carolina judge wants a security officer to accompany a former John Edwards aide as he goes to retrieve a sex tape of the two-time presidential candidate, increasing the court's control of the disputed video.
Superior Court Judge Abraham Penn Jones said in an order released Monday that the Orange County sheriff has appointed a security firm to help recover the video and other items. Former Edwards loyalist Andrew Young has said he has the original tape and copies stored in an Atlanta safety deposit box.
"Mr. Young shall take the Officer with him into the vault to obtain the lock box," the order reads. "The Officer is to secure all items contained in the lock box in bags as is customary for evidence collection."
Jones declared last week that Young was in contempt for not immediately turning over the tape when deputies initially went to retrieve it from him. Edwards' mistress, Rielle Hunter, has sued Young for invasion of privacy and sought the return of what she deemed a "very private and personal" video. Young says he has a tape that shows Edwards in a sexual encounter with a woman he assumes to be Hunter.
One copy of the tape has been sent to the FBI, Young has said in an affidavit.
The officer is also to get a copy of the lock box access log, according to Jones' order. The officer also will accompany Young and his wife to their Orange County residence to collect other items, and another security officer has been appointed to copy photos from a laptop and then scrub the photo files from the computer.
Young has written a tell-all book describing the affair between Edwards and Hunter and the lengths the presidential hopeful went to hide the matter.