SUFFOLK, Va. — A judge has ruled that reporters should have had access to a state lawmaker’s criminal court hearing last year.

Retired Judge Louis Lerner ruled Monday that a Suffolk Circuit Court failed to follow procedural standards at a hearing for the domestic abuse case against Del. Rick Morris.

The Virginian-Pilot reported (http://bit.ly/2riziom) that it and other news organizations can now buy a transcript of the hearing. But it’s unclear if reporters can attend Morris’ trial in August.

During the hearing in December, Judge Robert S. Brewbaker Jr. had certified a felony charge of cruelty and injuries to children. But he dismissed six other felony charges against Morris.

Morris is a Republican who represents parts of Suffolk and Franklin, and parts of Isle of Wight, Prince George, Southampton, Surry and Sussex counties.