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TRANSPARENCY TUESDAY: Cracking the case of campus crime

(01/25/11 11:57pm)

Logically, records of crime on campus ought to be the easiest records for any journalist to obtain. Crime reports are among the only documents that are specifically subject to disclosure under both federal and state statutes. And yet, year after year, college journalists tell the SPLC that campus police departments are among the most recalcitrant when it comes to honoring requests for public records. Among the recurring obstacles reported by college journalists is the widespread misperception that police records can be withheld, or identifying information blacked out, because of student confidentiality laws.