The following summary of Public Act 13-311 was drafted by counsel at the FOIC. It is provided only as a guide. While every effort has been made to ensure an accurate interpretation of its provisions, the public is encouraged to consult an official copy of the bill.
Summary of Public Act 13-311,
An Act Limiting the Disclosure of Certain Records of Law Enforcement Agencies and Establishing a Task Force concerning Victim Privacy under the Freedom of Information Act.
(Effective June 5, 2013)
Public Act 13-311 exempts, from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), a photograph, film, video, digital, or other visual image created by a law enforcement agency depicting a homicide victim, to the extent that the record could reasonably be expected to constitute an unwarranted invasion of the victim’s or surviving family members’ personal privacy.
The law also exempts from disclosure under FOIA, (1) law enforcement records, compiled in connection with the detection or investigation of a crime, that would disclose the identity of minor witnesses and (2) that portion of an audio tape or other recording where the individual speaking on the recording describes a homicide victim’s condition. The audio recording exemption (1) does not extend to 9-1-1 or other calls for assistance made by a member of the public to a law enforcement agency and (2) applies to requests for audio tapes or other recordings made on or before May 7, 2014, only.
Public Act 13-311 also creates a task force to make recommendations regarding the balance between victim privacy under the FOIA and the public right’s right to know. The task force must submit a report on its findings and recommendations to the General Assembly by January 1, 2014.