In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION


Ray A. Cooke,




against Docket #FIC 88-76


Norwalk Police Department,


Respondent June 22, 1988


The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on April 19, 1988, at which time the complainant appeared and presented testimony and argument on the complaint. The respondent failed to appear.


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


1. The respondent is a public agency within the meaning of 1-18a(a), G.S.


2. By letter dated February 18, 1988, the complainant requested access to or copies of records of all closed cases involving police officer Ronald Pine from January 1987 to February 1988.


3. By letter dated March 4, 1988, and filed with the Commission on March 8, 1988, the complainant appealed to the Commission, alleging the denial of his request.


4. It is found that, although the complainant received a letter from the respondent saying the records would be disclosed, at the time of the hearing the complainant still had not received access to or copies of the records.


5. It is found that the requested records are public records within the meaning of 1-18a(d), G.S.


6. It is concluded, therefore, that the respondent violated 1-15 and 1-19(a), G.S., by not providing the complainant promptly with access to or copies of the requested records.


Docket #FIC 88-76 Page Two


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


1. The respondent forthwith shall provide the complainant with access to or copies of the records described in paragraph 2 of the findings above.


2. The respondent henceforth shall act in strict compliance with 1-15 and 1-19(a), G.S.


3. The Commission reminds the respondent that failure to comply with a Commission order is a class B misdemeanor under 1-21k(b) and may subject the respondent to prosecution.


Approved by order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its special meeting of June 22, 1988.



Catherine H. Lynch

Acting Clerk of the Commission