Contracts and Policies Regarding IMSI Catchers (Baltimore Police Department)

Curtis Waltman filed this request with the Baltimore Police Department of Baltimore, MD.


From: Curtis Waltman

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to Maryland's Public Information Act ("PIA"), I hereby request the following records:

Documents concerning IMSI catchers or any of the following words: "Stingray", "cell site simulator", or "dirtbox". including:
-Contracts with the Harris Corporation regarding the acquisition of their Stingray or KingFish IMSI catchers
-Department policies and procedure regarding the use of IMSI catcher technology
-policies and procedures on the keeping of statistics about the Department's use and acquisition of IMSI catchers

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days, as the statute requires.


Curtis Waltman

From: DCU

Mr. Waltman,

This office is in receipt of your request for Baltimore Police Department's records. "Documents concerning" is a very broad request. You have not identified specific documents. The request you have made could requires examination of voluminous amounts of records, may be located with several custodians within the Baltimore Police Department and may be the records of another agency.

The Baltimore Police Department is only able to comply with requests that the Custodian of Records is able to identify and locate by a process that is not unreasonably burdensome or disruptive of BPD operations. Therefore, the BPD cannot conduct wide-ranging and unreasonably burdensome searches for records.

If you are requesting e-mails correspondence the following is the procedure to request BPD e-mail.

Request for BPD emails are handled by the Information and Technology Section (I T). BPD emails are handled separately from the City of Baltimore emails. BPD emails have a limited retrieval time frame. The cost of in-house retrieval is based on the number of email that must be reviewed before being disclosed. Confidential opinions, deliberations, advice or recommendations from one governmental employee or official to another for the purpose of assisting the latter official in the decision-making function may be withheld. In addition, part of an interagency, or intra-agency letter or memorandum that would not be available by law to a private party in litigation can be withheld.

The BPD can run a word, name or phase through the email retention system. The BPD can run individual email addresses or the entire BPD email system. Once the system identifies the emails with the word, name or phase each email will have to be review to determine what can be disclosed and their relevancy.

The average staff time of review e-mails for release is approximately 150-200 pages reviewed per hour (e-mails and attachments). Time differs depending on the size or complexity of the e-mails. Once all disclosable emails are identified the BPD will advise of the actual cost of producing the e-mails. There is a minimum charge of $50.00 to start the search and downloading of e-mails. After the number of emails is determined you will be provided with the review cost. If the costs and terms are agreed upon emails will be reviewed. The $50.00 search fee will be deducted from the final cost.

It is in petitioner's interest to narrow or identify specific persons or email addresses or to use precise key search words or phrases to limit unnecessary or unwanted emails. If you would like the BPD to proceed with your request remit a non-refundable deposit of $50.00 along with the email addresses, individual names and or key search words or phrases. Nothing in this response is intended to indicate that any records sought from the BPD exist or to waive any privileges held by the BPD. You may contest this response by filing a complaint for Judicial Review in Circuit Court pursuant to GP § 4-362.

If you would like start the search and download process remit check or money order in the amount of $50.00 payable to the Director of Finance; mail the payment to the Baltimore Police Department's Office Legal Affairs, 100 N Holiday St., Room 100, Baltimore, Md. 21202 Please refer to tracking # MPIA16 709 in any subsequent correspondence in this matter.

From: Curtis Waltman

I just spoke with Mr. Schubert regarding this request. I want to clarify that I am not requesting e-mail correspondence about IMSI catchers, only contracts with the Harris Corporation for either Stingray or Kingfish technology, and policies and procedure regarding the department's use of IMSI catchers, including those not manufactured by the Harris Corporation, although they are very likely to be. If this is still too broad any advice on how to narrow the scope of my request would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time.
Curtis Waltman

From: DCU

Dear Requester:

You submitted the below request for records to the Baltimore Police Department (“BPD”).

The Maryland Public Information Act (“PIA”), MD Code, General Provisions Article (“GP”), sections 4-101, et seq. governs your request.

Please find attached the records responsive to your request.

Nothing in this response is intended to indicate that any records sought from the BPD exist or to waive any privileges held by the BPD. You may contest this response by filing a complaint for Judicial Review in Circuit Court pursuant to GP § 4-362.


Brent D. Schubert
Assistant City Solicitor
Legal Affairs Division

From: Curtis Waltman


Thanks so much for your help with this request! I really appreciate it.

Curtis Waltman