Secret Service records of WrestleMania 3 & Pope at Silverdome

David Bixenspan filed this request with the United States Secret Service of the United States of America.
Tracking #


Due Feb. 5, 2018
Est. Completion None
Awaiting Response


From: David Bixenspan

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

All records pertaining to the Secret Service's security work on the September 19, 1987 papal mass at the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, Michigan, including the Secret Service's evaluation of the WWF WrestleMania III professional wrestling event on March 29, 1987 in the same building. The attached Detroit Free Press article from March 26, 1987 says that the Secret Service was using the wrestling show to help develop the Pope's security plan due to the relative similarity in layout and number of people in the building. Please include everything that you have on both events, but especially anything indicating the official count of people in the building for each event.

As Pope John Paul II has since passed away and the Silverdome has been demolished, there should be no security issues in releasing information specific to the building itself. I have attached supporting documents for both the death and the demolition, and I also stress that I am NOT looking for any information detailing secure routes to and from the building.

I am a member of the media, and request a fee waiver as this is part of my reporting process for Deadspin. 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 20 business days, as the statute requires.


David Bixenspan

  • Second20attempt20at20Pontiac20Silverdome20demolition20succeeds.pdf

  • WrestleMania20helps20city20ready20for20Pope20Detroit20Free20Press2003-26-1987.pdf

  • POPE20JOHN20PAUL20II20DIES20AT208420-20The20New20York20Times.pdf

From: United States Secret Service

Dear Requester,

Please see the attached letter regarding the status of your FOIA/PA request. If you have any questions in regard to this matter, please contact this office at (202) 406-6370.

Thank you,

Freedom of Information Act & Privacy Act Program
United States Secret Service
245 Murray Lane, SW, Building T-5
Washington, DC 20223
Phone: (202) 406-6370
Fax: (2020 406-5586

All e-mail to/from this account is subject to official review and is for official use only. Action may be taken in response to any inappropriate use of the Secret Service's e-mail system. This e-mail may contain information that is privileged, law enforcement sensitive, or subject to other disclosure limitations. Such information is loaned to you and should not be further disseminated without the permission of the Secret Service. If you have received this e-mail in error, do not keep, use, disclose, or copy it; notify the sender immediately and delete it.

From: David Bixenspan

Would you be able to tell me about where this FOIA request is in the queue and how long it will take to process? I have a story that's somewhat time sensitive that I'd like to be able to use the responsive documents in if possible.

David Bixenspan

From: David Bixenspan

Is there an estimated completion date for this request? Someone in the liaison office told me it's in the final stages of review but didn't have any further updates past that.


From: United States Secret Service

A no responsive documents response.

From: David Bixenspan

To whom it may concern,

In a phone call that I initiated, I was told by the liaison's office a few weeks ago that responsive documents had, in fact, been found, and were in the final stages of processing. Was that incorrect? Or was my request overly broad/narrow and in need of tweaking to be able to get the relevant documents? Please let me know what I should be doing.

David Bixenspan