You are here: Home AMICUS NEWS John Doe A., et al. v. WA. State Patrol (No. 90413-8)

John Doe A., et al. v. WA. State Patrol (No. 90413-8)

On April 8, 2016 the WSSC issued its opinion in this case. WACDL filed an amicus brief on April 24, 2015.

wsscCourt

Washington State Supreme Court on direct review of a trial court decision.

Issue

We urge the court to affirm the trial court's grant of summary judgement and issuance ofa  permanent injunction against the release of level I sex offender information under the Public Records Act.

 

Ruling

On April 8, 2016 in a 7-2 decision the WSSC reversed the trial curt and determined that release of the entire sex offender registry is subject to public records requests, including for both Level 1 offenders and for those convicted in juvenile court. The WSSC declined to find that an exemption to a PRA request exists within RCW 4.24.550, the sex offender registry statute, which would exempt the blanket release of level I sex offender registration information in response to a PRA request. The ruling acknowledges that the constitutionality of the registration system was upheld previously in State v. Ward, 123 Wn.2d 488, 869 P.2d 1062 (1994) as not being ex post facto punishment because the statute limited what sex offender information could be disseminated by an agency on its own volition. In this decision the Ward case was distinguished in that it did not address an agency's response to a PRA request. Therefore the privacy considerations of the John Does here is trumped by the strongly worded mandate for broad disclosure of public records promulgated by the PRA.

WACDL Amicus Author

Amy Muth

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