Judds requests that the court seal the death inquiry report.
AP — NASHVILLE, Tenn. The family of country music performer Naomi Judd submitted an amended court petition on Friday to have the records of the police investigation into her death and its findings sealed.
The documents contain audio and video interviews with family members conducted shortly after Judd’s death, the family said in a petition to the Williamson County Chancery Court, that disclosing these data would cause “severe pain and irreparable injury.”
The petition was submitted on behalf of the singer’s daughters Ashley and Wynonna Judd as well as her husband Larry Strickland, and it was a more thorough request than the one the family made last week. With the family’s consent, a representative gave it to The Associated Press.
Judd, 76, passed away on April 30 at her Tennessee residence. Ashley, her daughter, earlier claimed that her mother had committed suicide, though the family said that she had succumbed to “the disease of mental illness.”
Details of how Ashley Judd discovered her mother alive after she committed herself were also disclosed in the court document filed on Friday. Ashley stayed by her mother’s side while she waited for assistance for 30 minutes.
For a number of reasons, including the publication of her medical records and the family’s right to privacy, the petition seeks the court to enjoin the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office from disclosing the documents.
Local law enforcement files can often be disclosed under Tennessee’s public records legislation, although police are free to keep files secret while an investigation is active. That exception is no longer valid after a probe is finished. On Friday, the AP left the sheriff a note asking for comment.
Statements from Strickland, Wynonna, and Ashley Judd detailing their objections to the records were presented. Strickland said in the court document that he didn’t know the police were recording his interviews with them and that he provided personal and confidential information to help with the investigation.
When speaking with police authorities, Ashley Judd claimed to be in “clinical shock, active trauma, and acute anguish,” and she did not want those records, which included video, audio, and images, to haunt the family for a long time.