Burgess v. Chief, Police Department, City of Stamford
In the 1999 case of Sherman v. Board of Firearms Permit Examiners, the Freedom of Information Commission determined that the names and addresses of applicants who appealed the denial of their pistol permit applications and subsequently were granted permits were exempt from disclosure pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §29-28(d), along with the names and addresses of applicants with pending appeals. Rich Burgess and Connecticut Carry, Inc. appealed to the Freedom of Information Commission, alleging that the City of Stamford Police Department and its chief violated the Freedom of Information Act by failing to promptly comply with their request for a list of all pistol permit applications that are complete applications and have not yet been returned as either approved or denied. The FOIC found that the respondents provided the complainant with the list of pistol permit applicants on Feb. 22, 2012. The complainant objected explaining that he wanted the list that existed on Feb. 5, 2012, which included names that did not appear on the Feb. 22, 2012 list. The complainant contended that had the respondents complied promptly with his Feb. 5, 2012 request, he would have been provided with the list existing at the time of his request. The respondents argued that the issue of promptness was moot as the list was exempt from disclosure pursuant to C.G.S. §29-28(d) and should never have been disclosed. The FOIC agreed. In addition to Sherman, in its 2007 decision in Brown v. Chief, Police Department, City of Bridgeport, the FOIC concluded that C.G.S. §29-28d exempts from mandatory disclosure the names and addresses of: persons whose applications are pending; persons whose applications have been approved; persons whose applications were initially denied but later approved on appeal; and persons whose applications were denied but who have pending appeals of such denials. Accordingly, the respondents were precluded from disclosing the requested list and did not violate the FOIA as contended. The complaint was dismissed.