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UNITED STATES v. ROSS

October 7, 1966

UNITED STATES of America
v.
George E. ROSS, Jr.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: SIRICA

 SIRICA, District Judge.

 In this first-degree murder case, two defense motions which were argued before me on September 16, 1966, were taken under advisement. This opinion deals with defendant's request for an order requiring the government to produce, for inspection and copying by the defense, the general complaint files of the Metropolitan Police Department relating to this case. Specifically, the defendant wants access to Police Department Forms 252 and 163. Defense counsel has acknowledged in his affidavit attached to this motion that he has already been given access to Form 251.

 On the basis of oral argument and upon consideration of the authorities cited, the Court, on September 27, 1966, ordered production of Forms 251, 252 and 163 for an in camera inspection in order to be better informed as to the nature of the information sought by defense counsel.

 On September 28, 1966, in response to this order, the Court was furnished the following documents by the Assistant United States Attorney:

 
(1) An undated original of Form 251 consisting of two pages;
 
(2) An original of Form 252 consisting of one page and dated May 2, 1966;
 
(3) A copy of a second Form 252 consisting of one page and dated May 19, 1966;
 
(4) A carbon copy of a four-page typewritten document entitled "Resume," the first page of which is dated April 4, 1966, the second page of which is undated, and the final two pages of which are dated April 25, 1966. At the end of this four-page "Resume" appears the name "Det. Robert M. Boyd."

 After the Court ordered the production of these documents for an in camera inspection, the government conceded that it no longer objected to inspection of the Forms 252 by the defense. The government also conceded that there has never been a Form 163 in this case since the usual practice of the Police Department in homicide cases is to prepare a "Resume" rather than a Form 163.

 Consequently, in view of the fact that defense counsel has had no difficulty in gaining access to Form 251, that the government will now grant access to the defense for inspecting and copying the 252 Forms, and that there has never been a Form 163 in this case, the only matter left for consideration is the "Resume."

 The defendant bases his motion upon two statutes requiring the Police Department to keep certain records *fn1" and to make them available for public inspection. *fn2" The latter statute also provides that the necessity for keeping these records open to public inspection shall be enforceable by mandatory injunction issuing from this Court on the application of any person.

 The problem raised by this motion, however, goes beyond the requirements of these statutes. The question for decision now is whether the "Resume," or any part of it, comes within the scope of the statutory language.

 The scope of the statutory language is narrow. Section 134, which defines the nature of the records to be kept by the Police Department, speaks in terms of "general complaint files" and "arrest books." The first ...


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