After FOIA Flap, IL Police Vow More Openness


The Illinois State Police says it will be more open in responding to details of arrests its troopers make, but isn't making wholesale changes to its information policy. Last month, after repeated requests by the Springfield State Journal-Register, state rolice released a field report on the drunken-driving arrest of Springfield parks director Michael Stratton. The agency said releasing the report would be against the law but reversed its position after the state attorney general said such information must be released under the state's Freedom of Information Act.

An Illinois State Police spokesman said the agency had not adopted a new FOIA policy. He added, “However, we are taking a much closer look at all FOIAs and are being much more open to their release.” State Police officials look at FOIA requests on a case-by-case basis. Information is to be released as long as doing so does not interfere with privacy concerns or with any legal proceedings. The spokesman said the agency is working on posting information from arrest reports online “within the next couple of months.”

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