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Lawsuit against La Crosse Police dropped, after department releases records; city to pay attorney fees



The managing editor of a news organization that was suing the La Crosse Police Department over an open-records request now has those records, and dropped the lawsuit.

The Badger Project, out of Madison, says it now has the information it asked for five months ago, in regards to a former La Crosse police officer who resigned in lieu of being terminated back in 2019.

Along with the information, the police department agreed to pay $1,300 in legal fees within 30 days of the case being dismissed with prejudice, the Badger Project reported.

The lawsuit was filed Sep. 30 on behalf of Peter Cameron by the Wisconsin Transparency Project president and attorney, Tom Kamenick, who specializes in open-records law.

La Crosse’s city attorney said in a letter Wednesday sent to Kamenick that denying those records was “made in error,” the Badger Project noted.

“It is unknown why the records clerk provided such a response, as the clerk left her employment with the City several months ago,” La Crosse attorney Stephen Matt said in the letter.

The Badger Project added, “The records requested were held in the City of La Crosse Human Resources Department, Matty said. After the initial denial and filling of the lawsuit, David Buroker, the city’s deputy director of human resources, emailed Cameron and offered assistance in finding the records.”

By that time, Cameron had filed the lawsuilt.

The open-records request by Cameron was made in May. Police claimed “internal disciplinary” as the reason for not granting it. Kamenick discussed the details of the ordeal on La Crosse Talk PM back on Oct. 15.

Host of WIZM's La Crosse Talk PM | University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point graduate | Hometown: Greenville, Wis | Avid noonball basketball player and sand volleyballer in La Crosse

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Clark

    October 29, 2021 at 3:06 pm

    They expect people to believe that a records clerk made that decision without asking a supervisor before denying the request? Sounds like an easy scapegoat as she no longer works there. Seems a little unethical to place blame on someone who had no responsibility in the matter.

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