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June 30, 1999

Mr. Don Ballard
Assistant Attorney General
Office of the Attorney General
P.O. Box 12548
Austin, Texas 78701-2548

OR99-1814

Dear Mr. Ballard:

You have asked whether certain information is subject to required public disclosure under the Public Information Act, chapter 552 of the Government Code. Your request was assigned ID# 125825.

You assert that the requested information is excepted from disclosure based on section 552.108 of the Government Code. Section 552.108 of the Government Code states that information held by a law enforcement agency or prosecutor that deals with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime is excepted from required public disclosure "if release of the information would interfere with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime." Gov't Code 552.108(a)(1). You inform us that the requested information pertains to a pending case. We therefore believe that the release of the information "would interfere with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime." Id.

However section 552.108 is inapplicable to basic information about an arrested person, an arrest, or a crime. Gov't Code 552.108(c). We believe such basic information refers to the information held to be public in Houston Chronicle Publ'g Co. v. City of Houston, 531 S.W.2d 177 (Tex. Civ. App.--Houston [14th Dist.] 1975), writ ref'd n.r.e. per curiam, 536 S.W.2d 559 (Tex. 1976). Thus, with the exception of the basic information pertaining to the investigation, you may withhold the requested information from disclosure based on section 552.108(a)(1).(1)

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# 125827

Encl. Submitted documents

cc: Robert Zayas, M.D.
2704 Williamsburg Drive
Pasadena, Texas 77502
(w/o enclosures)


 

Footnotes

1. Because we resolve your request under 552.108, we do not address the other exceptions you raised except to note that "basic information" generally may not be withheld from public disclosure under section 552.103. Open Records Decision No. 362 (1983).
 

POST OFFICE BOX 12548, AUSTIN, TEXAS 78711-2548 TEL: (512) 463-2100 WEB: WWW.OAG.STATE.TX.US
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