FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION

OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

 

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION

 

James S. Patten,

 

Complainant

 

against Docket #FIC 87-356

 

Commanding Officer of the State of Connecticut Department of Public Safety, Division of State Police, and Chief State's Attorney of the State of Connecticut

 

Respondents April 13, 1988

 

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on January 15, 1988, at which time the complainant and the respondents appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint.

 

After consideration of the entire record, the following facts are found:

 

1. The respondents are public agencies within the meaning of 1-18a(a), G.S., except as limited in paragraph 9, below.

 

2. The complainant requested that the respondents allow him to inspect and/or copy:

 

a. any division of state police records, investigative files or reports, daily logs, applications, daily activity sheets, hearing transcripts, internal affairs report or investigations, civilian complaints, disciplinary hearings or procedures, statements, transcripts, documents or other written material containing or indexed under the name of James S. Patten regarding the Torrington Grand Jury investigation,

 

b. and, as assigned to the Torrington Grand Jury, budget requests, expenditure estimates and accountings, compilations of figures of expenditures and worksheets, weekly time sheets, daily time sheets, and personnel payroll records, including vacation, compensation, sick days and overtime.

 

3. Alleging the respondents denied his request, the complainant appealed to the Commission by letter dated December

 

Docket # FIC 87-356 Page Two

 

2, 1987, and filed with the Commission on December 7, 1987.

 

4. It is found that the complainant made his request to the respondents by letter dated November 10, 1987, reiterating a request made by letter dated June 8, 1987.

 

5. It is found that the respondents denied the complainant's request by letter dated November 17, 1987, reiterating letters of denial from the state police dated July 8, 1987, and from the respondent chief state's attorney dated June 17, 1987.

 

6. It is found that the state police do not maintain the records of grand jury investigations described in paragraph 2a, above, rather all such investigative records are maintained by the respondent chief state's attorney's office.

 

7. It is further found regarding the records described in paragraph 2b, above, that the state police do not maintain separate financial or personnel information for a grand jury investigation, that most such information is indistinguishable from other financial and personnel information, and that finding portions of those records that could be attributed to the Torrington grand jury investigation would demand research not required by the Freedom of Information Act.

 

8. It is found that the records described in paragraph 2a, above, relate to functions of the division of criminal justice that are not administrative.

 

9. It is concluded, therefore, that under 1-19c, G.S., the respondent chief state's attorney is not a public agency with respect to the records described in paragraph 2a, above, and the Commission lacks jurisdiction to rule on the disclosability of those records.

 

10. It is also found that parts of each of the records described in paragraph 2b, above, reveal investigative information and thus pertain to functions of the division of criminal justice that are not administrative.

 

11. It is concluded that to the extent these records reveal investigative information, the respondent chief state's attorney is not a public agency with respect to them, and the Commission lacks jurisdiction to rule on their disclosability.

 

12. In addition it is found that the respondent chief state's attorney does not maintain separate financial or

 

Docket #FIC 87-356 Page Three

 

personnel information for a particular investigation, that most such information is indistinguishable from other financial and personnel information, and that finding those records that could be attributed to the Torrington Grand Jury would demand research not required by the Freedom of Information Act.

 

The following order by the Commission is hereby recommended on the basis of the record concerning the above-captioned complaint:

 

1. The complaint is hereby dismissed.

 

Approved by order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of April 13, 1988.

 

 

Catherine H. Lynch

Acting Clerk of the Commission