Final Decision FIC2015-462
In the Matter of a Complaint by
||Docket #FIC 2015-462|
Chief, Police Department, Town of
Putnam; and Police Department, Town
March 9, 2016
The above-captioned matter was heard as a contested case on December 1, 2015, 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 Anthony Sinchak v. FOIC et al, Superior Court, Judicial District of Hartford, Docket No. CV 03-0826293 (corrected order dated January 27, 2004, Sheldon, J.)1
1Absent any objection by the complainant, the hearing officer granted the respondent, Town of Putnam's, September 11, 2015 request to be removed as a named respondent in this matter.
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. It is found that, on June 22, 2015, the complainant made a written request to the respondents for the following records related to a complaint filed by the complainant with the respondents’ Internal Affairs Division on November 16, 2014:
(a) The file number to my Complaint I sent to I.A.D. 11-16-14;
(b) The name of the investigator officer to my complaint dated 11-16-14;
(c) The name of the desk officer who spoke to Krist Campos when she turned herself into Putnam P.D. on or about 7-11-04;
(d) The investigative report to my complaint sent to I.A.D. Deputy Chief Leonel Konicki on 11-16-14; and
(e) Copy (ies) of any and all notes made by I.A.D. Leonel Konicki when he came to visit Tyronne L. Pierce at Osborn C.I.
3. By letter of complaint dated July 10, 2015 and filed on July 15, 2015, the complainant appealed to the Commission, alleging that the respondents violated the Freedom of Information (“FOI”) Act by failing to provide copies of certain records described in paragraph 2, above, in violation of the Freedom of Information Act.
4. Section 1-200(5), G.S., defines “public records or files” as:
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 that:
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 . . . (3) receive a copy of such records in accordance with section 1-212.
6. Section 1-212(a), G.S., provides, in relevant part, that “[a]ny person applying in writing shall receive, promptly upon request, a plain, facsimile, electronic or certified copy of any public record.”
7. It is found that, to the extent that the records identified in paragraph 2, above, exist and are maintained by the respondents, such records are public records within the meaning of §§1-200(5) and 1-210(a), G.S., and must be disclosed in accordance with §§1-210(a) and 1-212(a), G.S., unless they are exempt from disclosure.
8. Following the complainant’s filing of this complaint, it is found that on October 13, 2015, the respondents provided records responsive to the complainant’s request described in paragraph 2, above, to the Department of Correction, pursuant to §1-210(c), G.S.
9. At the hearing in this matter, the complainant conceded that certain records were provided to him by the respondents but asserted that the respondents’ response was incomplete. Specifically, the complainant claimed that he did not receive the following records that he contends are responsive to his records request:
(a) A particular shift log2 that is referenced in the Admission section of an Internal Affairs Division report dated November 22, 2014 (hereinafter referred to as “IAD Report”), which report the complainant had previously received; and
(b) Additional reports referred to in the Dudley Police Department shift log dated July 11, 2004, which shift log was provided to the complainant.
2During the hearing in this matter both the complainant and respondent Chief of Police referred to the dispatch logs as "shift logs." In addition, the IAD Report also refers to the dispatch logs as "shift logs." For purposes of clarity, the shift/dispatch logs will be referred to as "shift logs."
10. The respondents contended that they provided the Department of Correction with all the records that are responsive to the complainant’s request as described in paragraph 2, above.
11. With respect to the records described in paragraph 9(a), above, the complainant claims that “shift logs” should exist that support the statement that “[a]s noted in the shift log [it] is clear that Sgt. Guay was aware of Campos’ involvement in an armed robbery in Hartford,” which statement appears in the IAD Report.
12. It is found that the respondents provided the Department of Correction with two (2) shift logs covering July 11, 2004, one from the Dudley Police Department and one from the Putnam Police Department. It is further found that the Dudley Police Department shift log provides the name of the officer who spoke to Ms. Campos when she turned herself into the Putnam Police Department on July 11, 2004, which is presumably in response to complainant’s request described in paragraph 2(c), above.
13. It is found that there are no additional shift logs described in paragraph 9(a), above, that are responsive to the complainant’s June 22, 2015 records request3
3The Commission notes that the complainant did not specifically ask for particular shift logs in his June 22, 2015 records request. Rather, it is the complainant's October 29, 2014 records request in which he requests particular shift logs, which October 29, 2014 request is not the subject of the present appeal before this Commission.
14. The only remaining records at issue are those described in paragraph 9(b), above, for additional reports. In support of his claim that certain reports were not disclosed, the complainant relies on references in the June 11, 2004 Dudley Police Department shift log to “reporting” and “reports.” However, it is found that those references are used to describe certain actions and not to describe the existence of written reports.
15. It is found that there are no additional reports described in paragraph 9(b), above, that are responsive to the complainant’s June 22, 2015 records request.
16. Consequently, it is concluded that the respondents did not violate §§1-210(a) and 1-212(a), G.S., with respect to the request described in paragraph 2, above.
The following order by the Commission is hereby recommended on the basis of the record concerning the above-captioned complaint:
1. The complaint is hereby dismissed.
Approved by Order of the Freedom of Information Commission at its regular meeting of March 9, 2016.
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:
Tyronne Pierce #176388
Osborn Correctional Institution
335 Bilton Road
Somers, CT 06071
Chief, Police Department, Town of Putnam; and Police Department,
Town of Putnam
184 Church Street
Putnam, CT 06260
Cynthia A. Cannata
Acting Clerk of the Commission