Apr 17, 2009

Police privacy trumps public interest

Over the objections of the Pasadena city attorney and Pasadena police chief, Superior Court Judge David Yaffe ruled Thursday that the names of the two Pasadena police officers who shot and killed a man must be kept confidential. The police officers' union filed the lawsuit to prevent the names from being disclosed.

From the Times:
Richard Shinee, an attorney for the union, said that the officers' privacy rights should take priority.

"The safety of the officers always outweighs the need of the public," he said, adding that the public's interest in such matters was "idle curiosity, as far as I'm concerned."
The Los Angeles Times, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and the city of Pasadena argued that the names should be made public.
"That anyone in a position of authority can kill someone and have their identity kept secret is fundamentally inconsistent with our notion of democratic government," attorney Kelli Sager said after the hearing.
Pasadena Star-News

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