Columbia Police Union Sues City Over Public Records Requests

Oct 7, 2016

Credit File Photo / KBIA

  A union representing Columbia police officers is suing the city of Columbia after officials refused to release public records or asked "exorbitant" fees to fulfill the request.

The Columbia Police Officers Association sought emails between police Chief Ken Burton and Deputy Chief Jill Schlude from June 1 to July 22. The lawsuit says the city did not reply in a timely manner and then said it would cost nearly $840 to fulfill the request.

The union later made a request for copies of an anonymous survey officers filled out to measure police morale. The city refused to release that information, arguing the surveys were closed records because they contained information that might identify the employees.

City spokesman Steven Sapp says city officials are reviewing the lawsuit Friday.