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NH Supreme Court limits access to police records

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The Judicial Update

November 14, 2011

Concord, New Hampshire: On Wednesday, November 2, 2011 the New Hampshire Supreme Court issued its ruling in David Montenegro v. City of Dover and affirmed the lower court's decision to exempt information on police surveillance systems under the New Hampshire Right to Know Law. The lawsuit was originally filed by David Montenegro in January 2010 seeking access to information relating to the capabilities of police surveillance equipment including operation times and recording retention time. In response to the request, the city released redacted information, claiming that parts of the request were exempt under security and police exemptions. The court affirmed this interpretation, stating, "This information is of such substantive detail that it could reasonably be expected to risk circumvention of the law by providing those who wish to engage in criminal activity with the ability to adjust their behaviors in an effort to avoid detection." The court did side with the requester on the issue of job titles and ordered the titles of security monitors to be released under the records act.[1]

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