Wednesday, September 02, 2009
Criminals Denied Public Records Based on Motivation
Twice last week government agencies in Washington did not have to fill the public records requests of criminals or those accused, according to The Daily Weekly.
In the most recent instance, King County Jail nurses won a court order to prevent two men accused of murder from getting access to their full names and other personnel records that would normally be available to the public.
The first instance related to the records-requesting efforts of inmate Allan Parmalee, which King County Superior Court Judge Palmer Robinson ruled were "made to harass and intimidate the agencies to which the requests were submitted and the public employees who are the subjects of the requests." Robinson also said Parmalee's requests "would likely threaten the safety of public employees, officials, and their families."
The government's success in the Parmalee matter derives from a new state law allowing the agency to attempt to block the records request of a convicted criminal serving jail time if the requests appear to be made for the purpose of harassing or harming someone.