FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION
OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT

In the Matter of a Complaint by FINAL DECISION
Jose Ayuso,  
  Complainant  
  against   Docket #FIC 2009-781

Chief, Police Department, City of Hartford;

Police Department, City of Hartford; and

City of Hartford,

 
  Respondents October 27, 2010
       

           

The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on April 20, 2010, at which time the complainant and the respondents appeared, stipulated to certain facts and presented testimony, exhibits and argument on the complaint.  The complainant, who is incarcerated, appeared via teleconference, pursuant to the January 2004 memorandum of understanding between the Commission and the Department of Correction.  See  Docket No. CV 03-0826293, Anthony Sinchak v. FOIC et al, Superior Court, J.D. of Hartford at Hartford,  Corrected Order dated January 27, 2004 (Sheldon, J.). 

 

            After consideration of the entire record, the following facts are found and conclusions of law are reached:

 

1.  The respondents are public agencies within the meaning of 1-200(1), G.S.

 

2.  By letter of complaint filed December 28, 2009, the complainant appealed to the Commission, alleging that the respondents violated the Freedom of Information (“FOI”) Act by denying his request for public records.

 

            3.  It is found that the complainant made a written November 23, 2009 request to the respondents for records pertaining to the affidavits of certain police officers, the vests and weapons of certain officers, and certain other notes, reports and affidavits.

 

4.  Section 1-200(5), G.S., provides:

 

“Public records or files” means any recorded data or information relating to the conduct of the public's business prepared, owned, used, received or retained by a public agency, or to which a public agency is entitled to receive a copy by law or contract under section 1-218, whether such data or information be handwritten, typed, tape-recorded, printed, photostated, photographed or recorded by any other method.

 

5.  Section 1-210(a), G.S., provides in relevant part:

 

Except as otherwise provided by any federal law or state statute, all records maintained or kept on file by any public agency, whether or not such records are required by any law or by any rule or regulation, shall be public records and every person shall have the right to (1) inspect such records promptly during regular office or business hours, (2) copy such records in accordance with subsection (g) of section 1-212, or (3) receive a copy of such records in accordance with section 1-212.    

 

6.  It is concluded that the records requested by the complainant, to the extent they exist, are public records within the meaning of 1-200(5) and 1-210(a), G.S.

 

7.  It is found that the respondents provided all the records to the complainant in their custody that the complainant had requested.

 

8.  It is found that the remaining requests are for (a) the “logged serial numbers of vests” of certain officers; and (b) records pertaining to a visit by union representatives and an attorney that occurred in a police officer’s hospital room in June of 2003.

 

9. It is found that the respondents treat the issuance of vests the same way they treat the issuance of items such as shirts, pens, handcuffs, and holsters, and do not log the “serial numbers” of such items.

 

10. It is therefore found that the respondents do not maintain any records responsive to the request described in paragraph 8(a), above.

 

11. It is further found that the respondents do not maintain any records pertaining to a visit that occurred in then Officer Johnson’s hospital room in 2003, as described in paragraph 8(b), above.

 

12.  It is therefore concluded that the respondents did not violate the FOI Act as alleged.

 


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

 

1.  The complaint is dismissed.

 

Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of October 27, 2010.

 

 

__________________________

Cynthia A. Cannata

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 


 

PURSUANT TO SECTION 4-180(c), G.S., THE FOLLOWING ARE THE NAMES OF EACH PARTY AND THE MOST RECENT MAILING ADDRESS, PROVIDED TO THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION COMMISSION, OF THE PARTIES OR THEIR AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE.

 

THE PARTIES TO THIS CONTESTED CASE ARE:

 

Jose Ayuso #156239

MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution

1153 East Street South

Suffield, CT  06080

 

Chief, Police Department, City of Hartford; Police Department, City of Hartford; and

City of Hartford

c/o Edward M. Schenkel, Esq.

Crumbie Law Group

280 Trumbull Street

Floor 21

Hartford, CT  06103

 

 

 

____________________________

Cynthia A. Cannata

Acting Clerk of the Commission

 

 

 

 

 

FIC/2009-781/FD/cac/10/29/2010