Amy Richards\Townsquare Media

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — The Wyoming Supreme Court has ruled in favor of media organizations that challenged a circuit judge's refusal to release information about a Casper man charged in 2012 with kidnapping and sexual abuse of a Glenrock girl.

The court on Tuesday concluded that Circuit Judge I. Vincent Case Jr. violated the First Amendment when he closed court proceedings and sealed the court records before transferring the defendant to district court.

The Wyoming Press Association, several Wyoming newspapers and The Associated Press had challenged the closure of proceedings.

The supreme court ruled circuit judges can still follow state law forbidding state employees from identifying people accused of sexual assault before their cases reach district court by requiring attorneys to file papers with the defendant's name represented by initials or completely redacted.