The Commonwealth Court recently ruled on a right-to-know request for a casino’s surveillance video that captured a two-vehicle collision. In Pennsylvania State Police v. Kim, the Court found that the video collected by Pennsylvania State Police was a part of a criminal investigation and protected under the Criminal History Record Information Act.
The Court’s decision discussed a recent case argued in the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania by Helen Stolinas of The Mazza Law Group, P.C. In Pennsylvania State Police v. Grove, the issue involved surveillance video from vehicle dash cams installed in police vehicles. A full discussion on this issue can be found on our blog, Lawyer Argues Dashcam Case. We are still waiting the Supreme Court’s decision in that case.
The Commonwealth Court in Kim, found the case to be distinguishable from Grove because the videos were recorded by private parties (specifically a casino) and retrieved by police as a part of an investigation. In Grove, the surveillance video captured police non-investigative activities or daily activities which the Court found was not protected under the Criminal History Information Act. The issues presented in both cases involved Pennsylvania’s Right-to-Know Law which gives the public the right to request information relating to the business of public agencies. This fairly new law has been a highly contested issue because of the resources involved in complying with the request as well as the public’s interest and rights.
You or someone you know may be interested in gathering surveillance video that is a part of a criminal investigation. Motives for reviewing the surveillance videos can vary from direct involvement in the case to the public’s right-to-know the conduct of government agencies. A lawyer at the Mazza Law Group can help decide the best approach in helping you address these complex issues. Call us today.