Open Records

By  | 

A criminal justice commission is supporting a plan putting victims' personal information and details about crimes out of public view on police reports. Tuesday's decision came despite objections by members of the press that the public has the right to know the whole story about a crime.

The Criminal Justice Information Center Commission voted to present the proposed changes to the incident report forms for public comment and agreed to hold a vote on approving the changes January 18th.

The new incident reports have two sides, with public information on the front and confidential information on the back. Victim information, including names, addresses and telephone numbers, and specific details about the location and circumstances surrounding the crime, would be moved to the back under the proposed change.

Becki Goggins, director of the Uniform Crime Reporting Division, said the main reason for the changes is to protect victims from additional crimes, including identity theft.

Representatives from the media said reporters need names so they can contact victims and put a human face on the circumstances of crimes.