Blount County Sheriff’s Office doesn’t have open records policy

On two occasions*, I have requested help from the Office of Open Records Counsel with obtaining public records from the Blount County Sherriff’s Office.  Both times have been met with letters from the Mayor’s attorney Craig Garrett.  Mr. Garrett has attempted to school me on what constitutes a valid open records request.  Thus to try to avoid delays on future requests and the need to consult a state office, I asked for a copy of the open records policy for the Blount County Sheriff’s Office.  It turns out that the office doesn’t have a local open records policy.

*The follow up request to the Office of Open Records Counsel to obtain the open records policy could constitute a third occasion if counted separately from the original request for records related to housing federal inmates in the local jail.

For more information on previous requests see:
How the Sheriff’s Office wastes your money: Open Records request gets the interrogation room
A response to a nonresponse: Sheriff’s Office doesn’t have form used to determine inmate costs

—–Original Message—–
From: “Jeff French” <jfrench@bcso.com>
Sent: Thursday, December 1, 2016 9:03am
To: “tona@breezeair.net” <tona@breezeair.net>
Cc: open.records@cot.tn.gov, “Jill Reed” <jreed@cgarrettlaw.com>
Subject: FW: Blount County Sheriff’s Office – Open Records Request of Tona Monroe

Mrs. Monroe,

This is message I sent to you on November 16, 2016.  I apologize if you did not receive.

Thank you,

Jeff

From: Jeff French <jfrench@bcso.com>
Date: Wednesday, November 16, 2016 8:29 AM
To: Jeff French <jfrench@bcso.com>
Cc: Jill Reed <jreed@cgarrettlaw.com>
Subject: Re: Blount County Sheriff’s Office – Open Records Request of Tona Monroe

Mrs. Monroe,

The Blount County Sheriff’s Office does not have any such policy pertaining specifically to open records requests.

Thank you,

Jeff French

From: Jeff French <jfrench@bcso.com>
Date: Wednesday, November 16, 2016 9:54 AM
To: Jeff French <jfrench@bcso.com>
Subject: Fwd: Blount County Sheriff’s Office – Open Records Request of Tona Monroe

Jeff French

Begin forwarded message:

From: tona@breezeair.net
Date: November 15, 2016 at 3:13:33 PM EST
To: “Jeff French” <jfrench@bcso.com>
Cc: “open.records@cot.tn.gov” <open.records@cot.tn.gov>, “Jill Reed” <jreed@cgarrettlaw.com>
Subject: RE: Blount County Sheriff’s Office – Open Records Request of Tona Monroe

Dear Chief Deputy,

It is amazing what great lengths some will go to in a response to explain why they haven’t responded.  If just a fraction of effort was put into to responding in the first place, there wouldn’t be a need to contact an attorney, at taxpayer expense, to explain your lack of response.

Pursuant to the Open Records Act of Tennessee, I request a copy of the open records policy of Blount County Sheriff’s Office.  An electronic copy is preferred if available.

If you want me come to the Justice Center and give a copy of my drivers license I can but you should have a copy of my drivers license on file from the request when Chief Deputy Jimmy Long made a copy of it while I was placed in the interrogation room during a request some years back.

Sincerely,

Tona Monroe

—–Original Message—–
From: “Jill Reed” <jreed@cgarrettlaw.com>
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2016 2:22pm
To: “open.records@cot.tn.gov” <open.records@cot.tn.gov>
Cc: “Jeff French” <jfrench@bcso.com>, “tona@breezeair.net” <tona@breezeair.net>
Subject: Blount County Sheriff’s Office – Open Records Request of Tona Monroe

Please see attached from Attorney Craig Garrett.

Thank-you,

Jill A. Reed-Chaney

Legal Assistant

Law Office of Craig L. Garrett, Attorney at Law, PLLC

607 Smithview Drive

Maryville, Tennessee  37803

(865) 984-8200

(865) 981-2833 fax

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