Opinion Letter No. 05-16
convicted felon made a request to the Crime Victim Compensation Commission
(“CVCC”) for records pertaining to the criminal case that
resulted in his conviction for murder and also resulted in an award
of compensation to the victim’s family. CVCC’s only responsive
record was a file in its computer database summarizing the application
and award of compensation. The CVCC denied access to this record and
the requester appealed the denial to OIP under the Uniform Information
Practices Act, chapter 92F, Hawaii Revised Statutes (“UIPA”).
The OIP noted that information in a record may only be withheld if
it falls under a specific exception to disclosure; if no exception
applies, the information must be disclosed. Haw. Rev. Stat. §
92F-11 (1993). In this case, assuming that the applicant was promised
confidentiality, the applicant’s identity could be withheld
under the UIPA’s exception for information whose disclosure
would frustrate a legitimate public function.
November 1, 2005
Request to CVCC for records pertaining to Criminal Case
Information regarding the deceased victim that was part of the public
court record from the requester’s trail could not be withheld
under the UIPA’s privacy exception. However, other information
about the victim that was not already of public record could be withheld
even though the victim was deceased.