This is an open letter to Denver Mayor Michael Hancock requesting more information is provided before a “top-to-bottom review” of the Denver Sheriff Department is completed.
Honorable Michael Hancock
Mayor City of Denver
1437 N. Bannock St., Room 350
Denver, Colorado 80202
Dear Mayor Hancock,
I am writing to urge you to delay the review of the Denver Sheriff Department, until a public copy of both the Denver Sheriff Department Orders and the Denver Jail Procedure Manual is available for free on the Denver government website, fit for public consumption.
Alleged abuses committed by the Denver Sheriff have spurred this review. The public will not be able to judge the Denver Sheriff’s performance accurately, unless they have access to the public version of the operations and procedures. Both the Operations and Procedures act as a guideline as the expectations for how Denver Sheriff should act in any number of given situations. In legalese this is known as a standard of care. Knowing what the Denver Sheriff expects of it’s own employees is essential information for an individual to accurately assess the department’s performance.
Nearly a month ago I filed an Open Records request for both Denver Sheriff Department Orders and the Denver Jail Procedure Manual with the Records Coordinator in the Denver Department of Safety. My hope was to publicly post the orders on my website for the public to access. I thought if I could provide official operations and procedures it would raise the level of discussion. Unfortunately, the Denver Department of Safety estimated it would cost $750 to redact the policies to make them fit for public consumption. Furthermore, instead of trying to work with me to figure out a cost-effective way to make these documents available during the window of public discussion, the Denver Department of Safety has fought me every step along the way, and have hid behind their lack of Open Records policies as an excuse.