The Post-Standard's FOIA request for the names of Auburn, N.Y., city employees who stole $10,000 of city property has been denied. The city attorney claims the names are considered part of a criminal investigation and therefore are exempt. However, that excuse does not seem to fall within one of the 10 exemptions laid out in the law, the Post-Standard maintains. Perhaps most suspicious is that the city promised the workers anonymity and their jobs in return for the stolen tools and equipment.
The city of Auburn appears to have violated the law in refusing to release the names of workers on the city payroll who stole $10,000 worth of city tools and equipment.
The sticky-fingered workers were promised anonymity and told they could keep their jobs if they returned the stolen property.
But under the state Freedom of Information Law, the public appears to have a clear right to their identities. Courts have ruled that the law trumps any promise of anonymity.