2015 Legislature      CS for CS for CS for SB 248, 1st Engrossed
    2         An act relating to public records; amending s.
    3         119.071, F.S.; defining the terms “body camera,” “law
    4         enforcement officer,” and “personal representative”;
    5         providing that a body camera recording is confidential
    6         and exempt from public records requirements under
    7         certain circumstances; providing exceptions; requiring
    8         a law enforcement agency to retain body camera
    9         recordings for at least a specified period; providing
   10         for retroactive application; providing for future
   11         legislative review and repeal of the exemption;
   12         providing a statement of public necessity; providing
   13         an effective date.
   15  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   17         Section 1. Paragraph (l) is added to subsection (2) of
   18  section 119.071, Florida Statutes, to read:
   19         119.071 General exemptions from inspection or copying of
   20  public records.—
   21         (2) AGENCY INVESTIGATIONS.—
   22         (l)1.As used in this paragraph, the term:
   23         a. “Body camera” means a portable electronic recording
   24  device that is worn on a law enforcement officer’s body and that
   25  records audio and video data in the course of the officer
   26  performing his or her official duties and responsibilities.
   27         b.“Law enforcement officer” has the same meaning as
   28  provided in s. 943.10.
   29         c.“Personal representative” means a parent, a court
   30  appointed guardian, an attorney, or an agent of, or a person
   31  holding a power of attorney for, a person recorded by a body
   32  camera. If a person depicted in the recording is deceased, the
   33  term also means the personal representative of the estate of the
   34  deceased person; the deceased person’s surviving spouse, parent,
   35  or adult child; the deceased person’s attorney or agent; or the
   36  parent or guardian of a surviving minor child of the deceased.
   37  An agent must possess written authorization of the recorded
   38  person to act on his or her behalf.
   39         2. A body camera recording, or a portion thereof, is
   40  confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I
   41  of the State Constitution if the recording:
   42         a. Is taken within the interior of a private residence;
   43         b. Is taken within the interior of a facility that offers
   44  health care, mental health care, or social services; or
   45         c. Is taken in a place that a reasonable person would
   46  expect to be private.
   47         3. Notwithstanding subparagraph 2., a body camera recording
   48  may be disclosed by a law enforcement agency:
   49         a. In furtherance of its official duties and
   50  responsibilities; or
   51         b. To another governmental agency in the furtherance of its
   52  official duties and responsibilities.
   53         4.A body camera recording, or a portion thereof, shall be
   54  disclosed by a law enforcement agency:
   55         a. To a person recorded by a body camera; however, a law
   56  enforcement agency may disclose only those portions that are
   57  relevant to the person’s presence in the recording;
   58         b. To the personal representative of a person recorded by a
   59  body camera; however, a law enforcement agency may disclose only
   60  those portions that are relevant to the represented person’s
   61  presence in the recording;
   62         c.To a person not depicted in a body camera recording if
   63  the recording depicts a place in which the person lawfully
   64  resided, dwelled, or lodged at the time of the recording;
   65  however, a law enforcement agency may disclose only those
   66  portions that record the interior of such a place.
   67         d. Pursuant to a court order.
   68         (I)In addition to any other grounds the court may consider
   69  in determining whether to order that a body camera recording be
   70  disclosed, the court shall consider whether:
   71         (A)Disclosure is necessary to advance a compelling
   72  interest;
   73         (B)The recording contains information that is otherwise
   74  exempt or confidential and exempt under the law;
   75         (C)The person requesting disclosure is seeking to obtain
   76  evidence to determine legal issues in a case in which the person
   77  is a party;
   78         (D)Disclosure would reveal information regarding a person
   79  that is of a highly sensitive personal nature;
   80         (E)Disclosure may harm the reputation or jeopardize the
   81  safety of a person depicted in the recording;
   82         (F)Confidentiality is necessary to prevent a serious and
   83  imminent threat to the fair, impartial, and orderly
   84  administration of justice;
   85         (G)The recording could be redacted to protect privacy
   86  interests; and
   87         (H)There is good cause to disclose all or portions of a
   88  recording.
   89         (II)In any proceeding regarding the disclosure of a body
   90  camera recording, the law enforcement agency that made the
   91  recording shall be given reasonable notice of hearings and shall
   92  be given an opportunity to participate.
   93         5.A law enforcement agency must retain a body camera
   94  recording for at least 90 days.
   95         6. The exemption provided in subparagraph 2. applies
   96  retroactively.
   97         7. This exemption does not supersede any other public
   98  records exemption that existed before or is created after the
   99  effective date of this exemption. Those portions of a recording
  100  which are protected from disclosure by another public records
  101  exemption shall continue to be exempt or confidential and
  102  exempt.
  103         8. This paragraph is subject to the Open Government Sunset
  104  Review Act in accordance with s. 119.15 and shall stand repealed
  105  on October 2, 2020, unless reviewed and saved from repeal
  106  through reenactment by the Legislature.
  107         Section 2. (1) The Legislature finds that it is a public
  108  necessity that the following types of body camera recordings are
  109  made confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1), Florida
  110  Statutes, and s. 24(a), Article I of the State Constitution:
  111  recordings taken within the interior of a private residence;
  112  recordings taken within the interior of a facility that offers
  113  health care, mental health care, or social services; and
  114  recordings taken in a place that a reasonable person would
  115  expect to be private.
  116         (2) The Legislature recognizes the increased prevalence of
  117  body cameras being used by law enforcement officers. Body
  118  cameras preserve information that has the potential to assist
  119  both law enforcement officers’ and the public’s ability to
  120  review the circumstances surrounding an event in which law
  121  enforcement intervention occurs.
  122         (3) However, the Legislature also finds that, in certain
  123  instances, audio and video recorded by body cameras is
  124  significantly more likely to capture highly sensitive personal
  125  information than other types of law enforcement recordings or
  126  documents. The Legislature finds that public disclosure of these
  127  recordings could have an undesirable chilling effect. People who
  128  know they are being recorded by a body camera may be unwilling
  129  to cooperate fully with law enforcement officers if they know
  130  that a body camera recording can be made publicly available to
  131  anyone else. People may also be less likely to call a law
  132  enforcement agency for services if their sensitive personal
  133  information or the circumstances that necessitate a law
  134  enforcement agency’s involvement are subject to public
  135  dissemination as a body camera recording. The Legislature also
  136  finds that body camera recordings could be used for criminal
  137  purposes if they were available upon request. This exemption
  138  from public records requirements allows law enforcement officers
  139  to more effectively and efficiently administer their duties,
  140  which would otherwise be significantly impaired. The Legislature
  141  finds that these concerns regarding the impact of the public
  142  records requirements for body camera recordings not only
  143  necessitate the exemption of the recordings from public records
  144  requirements, but also outweigh any public benefit that may be
  145  derived from their disclosure.
  146         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2015.