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Jessica Ridgeway Murder Trial: Colorado Supreme Court Opens Austin Reed Sigg Hearing To The Public

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JESSICA RIDGEWAY MURDER TRIAL
This photo provided by the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office shows Austin Reed Sigg on Nov. 27, 2012. Sigg, 17, will be charged as an adult in the kidnapping and killing a 10-year-old Westminster girl is now being held in the Jefferson County jail. Prosecutors say he confessed to kidnapping and killing Jessica Ridgeway on her way to school as well as attacking a jogger earlier. (AP Photo/Jefferson County Sheriff's Office) | AP
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In a ruling released Thursday, the Colorado Supreme Court reversed an order to close a hearing in the Jessica Ridgeway murder case to the public.

The preliminary hearing for Austin Reed Sigg, 17, is scheduled for Friday morning in Jefferson County and will now be open to the public. The hearing will present evidence against the teen who allegedly confessed to the murder and abduction of 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway in October.

In a move The Denver Post called "exceedingly rare," Judge Stephen Munsinger closed Sigg's preliminary hearing from the public in an effort to ensure a fair trial and protect the privacy of the victims' families.

Media organizations however appealed to the Colorado Supreme Court, which ruled that Munsinger did not make "specific findings demonstrating a substantial probability that the defendant's right to a fair trial will be prejudiced by publicity that closure would prevent and that reasonable alternatives to closure cannot adequately protect the defendant's fair trial rights."

Sigg is accused of second degree kidnapping, sexual assault on a child, four counts of first degree murder, robbery and the attempted abduction and sexual assault of a female jogger at Ketner Lake.

Earlier on HuffPost:

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