|Office of the Attorney General - State of Texas
July 26, 2000
Mr. Ric Gonzalez
Dear Mr. Gonzalez:
You ask whether certain information is subject to required public disclosure under chapter 552 of the Government Code. Your request was assigned ID# 138950.
The City of Lewisville (the "city") received a request for criminal records pertaining to a named individual. You claim that requested information is excepted from disclosure under sections 552.101 and 552.108 of the Government Code. We have considered the exceptions you claim and have reviewed the submitted information.
The City of Dallas (the "city") received a request for all arrest records involving a named individual. You claim that requested information is excepted from disclosure under section 552.101 of the Government Code. We have considered the exception you claim and have reviewed the submitted information.
Section 552.101 excepts from disclosure "information considered to be confidential by law, either constitutional, statutory, or by judicial decision." Section 552.101 encompasses common law privacy. You have submitted as responsive documents which you assert is a criminal history compiled by the city. Where an individual's criminal history information has been compiled by a governmental entity, the information takes on a character that implicates the individual's right to privacy. See United States Dep't of Justice v. Reporters Comm. for Freedom of the Press, 489 U.S. 749 (1999) (concluding that federal regulations which limit access to criminal history record information that states obtain from the federal government or other states recognize privacy interest in such information). Similarly, open records decisions issued by this office acknowledge this privacy interest. See Open Records Decision Nos. 616 (1993), 565 (1990). The city, therefore, must withhold all compilations of the referenced individual's criminal history pursuant to section 552.101 to the extent that the specified individual is identified as a suspect.(1)
If this ruling requires or permits the governmental body to withhold all or some of the requested information, the requestor can appeal that decision by suing the governmental body. Id. § 552.321(a); Texas Department of Public Safety v. Gilbreath, 842 S.W.2d 408, 411 (Tex. App.--Austin 1992, no writ).
Carla Gay Dickson
Ref: ID# 138950
Encl. Submitted documents
cc: Mr. John Long, President
1. Since section 552.101 of the Government Code is dispositive of the information at issue, we do not address your claim under section 552.108.