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February 16, 1999

Ms. Lisa L. Smestuen
Senior Staff Attorney
The Texas A&M University System
John B. Connally Building
301 Tarrow, 6th Floor
College Station, Texas 77840-7896

OR99-0462

Dear Ms. Smestuen:

You ask whether certain information is subject to required public disclosure under the Texas Open Records Act, chapter 552 of the Government Code. Your request was assigned ID# 122114.

The Tarleton State University Police Department (the "department") received a request for information relating to a campus incident that occurred on October 9, 1998. You claim that the requested information is excepted from disclosure under sections 552.101, 552.108, and 552.130 of the Government Code. We have considered the exceptions you claim and reviewed the submitted information.

Section 552.101 of the Government Code excepts from disclosure "information considered to be confidential by law, either constitutional, statutory, or by judicial decision." Section 552.101 encompasses confidentiality provisions such as section 58.007 of the Family Code. Juvenile law enforcement records relating to conduct that occurred on or after September 1, 1997 are confidential under section 58.007. The relevant language of section 58.007(c) reads as follows:

(c) Except as provided by Subsection (d), law enforcement records and files concerning a child may not be disclosed to the public and shall be:

(1) kept separate from adult files and records; and

(2) maintained on a local basis only and not sent to a central state or federal depository, except as provided by Subchapter B.

The submitted records are law enforcement records concerning juvenile conduct that occurred after September 1, 1997. Thus, the requested information is confidential pursuant to section 58.007(c) of the Family Code. Accordingly, the department must withhold the requested information from disclosure in its entirety under section 552.101 of the Government Code.

Because we are able to make a determination under section 552.101, we need not address your additional arguments against disclosure. We are resolving this matter with an informal letter ruling rather than with a published open records decision. This ruling is limited to the particular records at issue under the facts presented to us in this request and should not be relied on as a previous determination regarding any other records. If you have any questions regarding this ruling, please contact our office.

Sincerely,

June B. Harden
Assistant Attorney General
Open Records Division

JBH/ch

Ref.: ID# 122114

Enclosures: Submitted documents

cc: Ms. Rita M. Perdue
P.O. Box 1472
Stephenville, Texas 76401
(w/o enclosures)


 

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