Recorded Securus Phone Calls and/or Communications Records and Contracts and Supporting Documents

Robert Teel filed this request with the San Diego County Sheriff's Department of San Diego County, CA.
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Completed

Communications

From: Robert Teel

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the California Public Records Act (California Government Code §§ 6250), I hereby request the following records:

Please provide:

(1) all (i) audio or visual records and recordings, or (ii) written transcriptions, notes, reports, or memoranda, or (iii) other information, about, in connection with, or of, any and all phone calls, emails, videos, or other communications made or received by detainees or inmates using any Securus phone or communication system, including without limitation the Securus Secure Call Platform or the AdvanceConnect Direct Bill, Traditional Collect, Inmate Debit, Jail Voicemail, Video Visitation, Securus Online, or Secure Instant Email, for any detention facilities operated by you, including without limitation the detention facilities set for below, and including without limitation records and recordings of:

(a) the content of the communication;
(b) the prisoners’ first and last names;
(c) the phone numbers they called or received calls from;
(d) the date, time, and duration of the calls;
(e) the inmates’ Securus account numbers;
(f) the metadata for the communication;
(g) the recording URL where the audio recordings of the calls can be downloaded; and
(h) any other information collected by Securus or you in connection with such calls; and

(2) all contracts, agreements, correspondence, documents, statements, writings and recordings of every kind (mechanical, electronic, typed or written) by and between the San Diego County Sherriff’s Department or any other law enforcement agency and Securus, including but not limited to, letters, correspondence, memoranda, notes, audio recordings, reports, and transcriptions in the possession of, or subject to the control of you or Securus.

List of Detention Facilities:

San Diego County – Camp Barrett
San Diego County – Central Jail
San Diego County – Facility 8
San Diego County – George Bailey Detention Facility
San Diego County – Las Colinas Detention & Re-Entry Facilities
San Diego County – Las Colinas Detention Facility
San Diego County – South Bay Detention Facility
San Diego County – Vista Detention Facility, and
San Diego County – East Mesa Detention Facility

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 calendar days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Robert Teel

From: Bayuk, Rachel

Dear Mr. Teel,
Please find attached an extension letter in response to your CPRA request dated January 25, 2016. A hard copy will follow via US mail.

Thank you,
Rachel Bayuk
Administrative Assistant
Legal Affairs Division, San Diego Sheriff's Department

From: San Diego County Sheriff's Department

An interim response, stating the request is being processed.

From: Bayuk, Rachel

Good morning Mr. Teel,
You are correct that you should have received a response by the 18th. I have forwarded your email to Mr. Toyen and I am awaiting a response from him as he is the person who responds to CPRA requests.
Thank you,
Rachel

From: Toyen, Sanford

Dear Mr. Teel:

The Sheriff's Department is in receipt of your email dated January 25, 2016 seeking records pursuant to the California Public Records Act. On February 4, 2016, the Sheriff's Department extended its response deadline by 14 days pursuant to California Government Code section 6353(c)(3). The Sheriff's Department now responds as follows:

The first component of your request seeks:

(1) all (i) audio or visual records and recordings, or (ii) written transcriptions, notes, reports, or memoranda, or (iii) other information, about, in connection with, or of, any and all phone calls, emails, videos, or other communications made or received by detainees or inmates using any Securus phone or communication system, including without limitation the Securus Secure Call Platform or the AdvanceConnect Direct Bill, Traditional Collect, Inmate Debit, Jail Voicemail, Video Visitation, Securus Online, or Secure Instant Email, for any detention facilities operated by you, including without limitation the detention facilities set for below, and including without limitation records and recordings of:
(a) the content of the communication;
(b) the prisoners' first and last names;
(c) the phone numbers they called or received calls from;
(d) the date, time, and duration of the calls;
(e) the inmates' Securus account numbers;
(f) the metadata for the communication;
(g) the recording URL where the audio recordings of the calls can be downloaded; and

any other information collected by Securus or you in connection with such calls;

This request is denied pursuant to Government Code section 6254(f), as the recordings of inmates constitute records of investigations, as well as jail security files. The request is also denied pursuant to Government Code section 6255, as the burden of production associated with copying and producing all recorded communications by jail inmates far outweighs the public interest in such recordings. Additionally, we do not believe that the records sought (recorded telephone conversations of inmates, and recorded conversations with visitors) constitute writings containing information related to the public's business. (Coronado Police Officers' Association v. Carroll (2003) 106 Cal. App. 4th 1001).

The second component of your request seeks:

(2) all contracts, agreements, correspondence, documents, statements, writings and recordings of every kind (mechanical, electronic, typed or written) by and between the San Diego County Sherriff's Department or any other law enforcement agency and Securus, including but not limited to, letters, correspondence, memoranda, notes, audio recordings, reports, and transcriptions in the possession of, or subject to the control of you or Securus.
List of Detention Facilities:
San Diego County - Camp Barrett
San Diego County - Central Jail
San Diego County - Facility 8
San Diego County - George Bailey Detention Facility
San Diego County - Las Colinas Detention & Re-Entry Facilities
San Diego County - Las Colinas Detention Facility San Diego County - South Bay Detention Facility San Diego County - Vista Detention Facility, and San Diego County - East Mesa Detention Facility

Preliminarily, Camp Barrett is run by the San Diego County Probation Department, not the Sheriff's Department. (http://www.sandiegocounty.gov/probation/camp_barrett.html) The Sheriff's Department therefore has no records responsive to any request involving Camp Barrett.

With respect to the contract between the County of San Diego and Securus, please understand that it is the County Department of Purchasing and Contracting, not the San Diego County Sheriff's Department, that is the repository for county contracts. However, the Sheriff's Department believes it has a copy of the original contract, along with the subsequent amendments. In any event, we will provide you with the documents that we have, on a CD or DVD-ROM, which we will mail to the Somerville, MA address, unless you wish to have it sent elsewhere. The size of this document prevents it from being transmitted via email.

With respect to correspondence with Securus, the Sheriff's Department has pulled what it believes to be all correspondence with Securus in our possession. The Sheriff's Department is in the process of reviewing the correspondence and redacting out any exempt information, such as personal addresses, personal telephone numbers, personal email addresses, and other personal information, as well as information that may be exempt under other provisions of the California Public Records Act. As with the contract, we will provide you with the documents that we have, subject to redactions, on a CD or DVD-ROM, which we will mail to the Somerville, MA address, unless you wish to have it sent elsewhere. The size of this document prevents it from being transmitted via email.

Sincerely,

WILLIAM D. GORE, Sheriff

By: Sanford A. Toyen, Legal Advisor
Office of the Sheriff, Legal Affairs Unit

"Keeping the Peace Since 1850"

From: Bayuk, Rachel

Hello Mr. Teel,
You should have received this email below yesterday around 4pm from Mr. Toyen.

Rachel

From: Robert Teel

Dear Mr. Toyen,

Thank you for your response. Please consider this reply as my request for reconsideration of your denial on the grounds set forth below.

Cal. Govt. Code 6254(f) - Your response relies on the fact that the goal for recording and monitoring detainee phone conversations is not only to enhance safety, but also to help prevent crimes both inside and outside a facility. A criminal investigation refers to the process of collecting information (or evidence) about a crime in order to: (A) determine if a crime has been committed; (B) identify the perpetrator; (C) apprehend the perpetrator; and (D) provide evidence to support a conviction in court. If the first three objectives are successfully attained, then the crime can be said to be solved.

Most of the recordings and items requested in subpart (1) of my request do not involve a crime of any kind. After such records are determined to be free of intelligence that would aide any institutional goal, including without limitation any criminal investigation, there cannot be any grounds for denial of production under Government Code Section 6254(f). In other words, once the recordings are determined not to be connected to any crime, they are not exempt.

Second, Cal. Govt. Code 6255 - The information in these records concerns state and federal Constitutional rights of detainees, including without limitation the 4th and 6th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. To the extent indefinite records retention of personal or protected telephone recordings by a public correctional or law enforcement agency offends Constitutional rights of privacy after such records are determined to be free of intelligence that would aide the institutional goal (in this case safety and crime prevention), they are of great legitimate purpose to the public.

Securus’ database is capable of providing tables, similar to spreadsheets, containing the information I requested, including without limitation metadata and a “recording URL” where the audio recordings of the calls can be downloaded. Further, Securus’ website claims Securus acknowledges that this is data which it can make available at the fingertips of law enforcement and correctional authorities. Securus states that the data which is available and being sold to corrections and law enforcement authorities can be provided on demand.

Accordingly, I respectfully disagree with your opinion that production of the records is either burdensome or not of legitimate purpose to the public. There is no weighing necessary as the records are available “on demand” and at your agency’s “fingertips.”

Third, Cal. Govt. Code 6252(e) and (g) – The California Public Records Act defines a writing as, any handwriting, typewriting, printing, photostating, photographing, photocopying, transmitting by electronic mail or facsimile, and every other means of recording upon any tangible thing any form of communication or representation, including letters, words, pictures, sounds, or symbols, or combinations thereof, and any record thereby created, regardless of the manner in which the record has been stored. Cal. Govt. Code 6252(g).

“Public records” include any writing containing information relating to the conduct of the public's business prepared, owned, used, or retained by any state or local agency regardless of physical form or characteristics. Cal. Govt. Code 6252(e).

In COPA v. Carroll, the court was dealing with a PRA request for a database compiled by the Public Defender’s office when it stated “We believe the database represents a logical application of the traditional functions of defense counsel because the information contained therein is partially assembled from individual client files -- files created by the Public Defender as counsel to defendants in criminal proceedings. The collected [106 Cal.App.4th 1009] information is then retained and used to assist in the defense of existing and future clients. These are private functions to which the Public Defender is entitled to maintain a level of independence equivalent to a private attorney. (Polk, 454 U.S. at pp. 321-322.)

The court held that the Public Defender was engaged in private functions equivalent to a private attorney, and thus the records requested did not constitute “conduct of the public’s business.” The Sheriff’s office is hardly engaged in private functions equivalent to any private business. Accordingly, I respectfully disagree with your interpretation of COPA v. Carroll.

Finally, pursuant to Government Code §6253(a), any non-exempt part of a record must be made available after any exempt information has been redacted. To the extent any of the information requested is non-exempt (such as the phone numbers called for personal or protected conversations determined to be free of investigative purposes), I request they be provided.

Please provide me with an estimate of any fees intended to be charged as it may be more cost effective to inspect the records in person prior to incurring any charges.

Thank you for your consideration and cooperation.

Sincerely,

Robert Teel

From: San Diego County Sheriff's Department

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

From: San Diego County Sheriff's Department

A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.

From: San Diego County Sheriff's Department

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

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From: Bayuk, Rachel

Good morning Mr. Teel,
Here is a copy of the letter that was mailed to you on March 3, 2016 along with a CD-ROM. Since we are on the West Coast and you are on the East Coast, it might take a few days for the envelope to arrive to you. Please let me know if you don't see the response letter along with the CD-ROM by the end of the week.
Thank you,
Rachel

From: Robert Teel

Hello Rachel,

Thank you for the email materials you forwarded in .pdf format. Many of the emails refer to attachments which were not included. I would appreciate it production of those materials referred to as attachments in the produced emails.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,
Robert Teel

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