Cornyn Open Records Letter Ruling OR99-0898
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John Cornyn
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April 5, 1999

Mr. Michael Bostic
Assistant City Attorney
Criminal Law and Police Division
City of Dallas
City Hall
Dallas, Texas 75201

OR99-0898

Dear Mr. Bostic:

You ask whether certain information is subject to required public disclosure under the Open Records Act, chapter 552 of the Government Code. Your request was assigned ID# 124534.

You assert that the requested information is excepted from disclosure based on section 552.119 of the Government Code. Section 552.119 excepts from public disclosure a photograph of a peace officer(1) that, if released, would endanger the life or physical safety of the officer unless one of three exceptions applies. The three exceptions are: (1) the officer is under indictment or charged with an offense by information; (2) the officer is a party in a fire or police civil service hearing or a case in arbitration; or (3) the photograph is introduced as evidence in a judicial proceeding. This section also provides that a photograph exempt from disclosure under this section may be made public only if the peace officer gives written consent to the disclosure. Open Records Decision No. 502 (1988). The submitted copies of photographs depict peace officers and it does not appear that any of the exceptions are applicable. You have not informed us that the peace officers have executed any written consents to disclosure. Thus, you must redact from the photographs the entire depictions of the peace officers; the remainder of the photographs must be released.

We are resolving this matter with this 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 may not be relied upon as a previous determination regarding any other records. If you have questions about this ruling, please contact our office.

Sincerely,

Ruth H. Soucy
Assistant Attorney General
Open Records Division

RHS/ch

Ref.: ID# 124534

Enclosures: Submitted documents

cc: Mr. Michael Connolly
1200 East Collins Boulevard, Suite 318
Richardson, Texas 75081
(w/o enclosures)


 

Footnotes

1. "Peace officer" is defined by article 2.12 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
 

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