FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT
In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Frank Keegan and Bristol Press,
against Docket #FIC 88-216
City of Bristol, Bristol Police Commission and Bristol Police epartment,
Respondents October 26, 1988
The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on July 28, 1988, at which time the complainants 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.
2. On or about late May, the complainants orally requested to inspect an internal investigation report concerning the alleged drug use of Police Officer Britt.
3. The respondent city initially agreed to release the requested report, but subsequently did not disclose it to the complainants.
4. By letter of complaint dated and filed with the Commission on June 13, 1988, the complainants alleged that they were denied access to the requested internal investigation report.
5. By letter dated June 27, 1988, the respondents denied the complainants' request on the ground that they had received a written objection, pursuant to 1-20a(c), G.S., from counsel for Police Officer Britt.
6. By letter dated June 28, 1988 and filed with the Commission on June 30, 1988, the complainants again stated that they were denied access to the requested internal investigation report.
Docket #FIC 88-216 Page 2
7. Pursuant to 1-21j-36 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies, the Hearing Officer ordered the respondents to submit to the Commission copies of the complainants' written request for the internal investigation report and the objection filed by counsel for Police Officer Britt.
8. On September 14, 1988, the Hearing Officer designated the complainants' June 3, 1988 letter of request and the objection filed by counsel for Police Officer Britt, dated June 10, 1988, as respondents' exhibits #2 and #3 respectively.
9. At the hearing, the respondents stated that they did not object to the disclosure of the requested report.
10. It is found that Police Officer Britt failed to appear at the hearing.
11. It also is found that the requested internal investigation report is kept in Police Officer Britt's personnel file and is available in the Police Chief's office.
12. It further is found that there is a legitimate public interest in the disclosure of a record relating to the conduct and performance of a police officer.
13. It is concluded that the requested internal investigation report is a public record within the meaning of 1-18a(d), G.S., subject to disclosure under 1-15 and 1-19(a), G.S.
The following order by the Commission is hereby recommended on the basis of the record concerning the above-captioned complaint:
1. The respondents forthwith shall provide the complainants with a copy of the internal investigation report concerning Police Officer Britt described in paragraph 2 of the findings, above.
Approved by order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its special meeting of October 26, 1988.
Catherine H. Lynch
Acting Clerk of the Commission