|Office of the Attorney General - State of Texas
July 15, 1999
Mr. Raymond D. Martinez
Dear Mr. Martinez:
You ask whether certain information is subject to required public disclosure under the Texas Public Information Act, chapter 552 of the Government Code. Your request was assigned ID# 126012.
The Dallas Police Department (the "department") received a written request for two particular offense reports. You contend the requested documents are excepted from required public disclosure pursuant to section 552.108 of the Government Code.
Section 552.108(a)(1) of the Government Code excepts from required public disclosure "[i]nformation held by a law enforcement agency or prosecutor that deals with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime . . . if . . . release of the information would interfere with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of crime." Because you state that the criminal investigation pertaining to the offense reports is pending, we conclude that the department may withhold most of the information at issue pursuant to section 552.108(a)(1).
Please note, however, that section 552.108 does not except from required public disclosure "basic information about an arrested person, an arrest, or a crime." Gov't Code § 552.108(c). The department must release these types of information in accordance with Houston Chronicle Publishing Company v. City of Houston, 531 S.W.2d 177 (Tex. Civ. App.--Houston [14th Dist.] 1975), writ ref'd n.r.e. per curiam, 536 S.W.2d 559 (Tex. 1976). The remaining information may be withheld.
We are resolving this matter with an informal letter ruling rather than with a published open records decision. This ruling is limited to the particular records at issue under the facts presented to us in this request and should not be relied upon as a previous determination regarding any other records. If you have questions about this ruling, please contact our office.
Karen E. Hattaway
Ref.: ID# 126012
Encl. Submitted documents
cc: Mr. Tony A. Laaziz
POST OFFICE BOX 12548, AUSTIN, TEXAS 78711-2548 TEL: (512) 463-2100 WEB: WWW.OAG.STATE.TX.US