The Arizona Daily Star was given the go-ahead to sue the Pima County Sheriff's Department over its refusal to release documents related to its investigation of mass shooter Jared Lee Loughner.

Last December, Star reporter Tim Steller requested the documents related to the Jan. 8, 2011, shooting but was told by the department that a court order from March 2011 prevented it from releasing them. The Star then filed a motion to intervene.

U.S. District Court Judge Larry Alan Burns granted the Star's motion based on the fact that other news organizations were allowed to intervene and challenge the protective order.

The decision does not require the Sheriff's Department turn over any documents. It just means a party may now sue the department in an Arizona court to determine if the documents are suitable to be released.