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Simson Garfinkel

A View from Simson Garfinkel

Improper Use of Records By Police

After Alice Gawronski wrote a letter to the editor of her local newspaper criticizing the action of Orange County Sheriff Kevin Beary, the Sheriff used restricted driver’s license records to obtain Gawronski’s home address. The Sheriff then wrote her a…

  • April 6, 2005

After Alice Gawronski wrote a letter to the editor of her local newspaper criticizing the action of Orange County Sheriff Kevin Beary, the Sheriff used restricted driver’s license records to obtain Gawronski’s home address. The Sheriff then wrote her a hostile letter.

The problem here is that the Sheriff’s use of the records may have violated the 1996 Driver’s Privacy Protection Act.

Full details can be found at the Orlando Sentinel’s website.

What sparked Gawronski’s letter was a use of a Taser on a suspect that was handcuffed to a hospital bed in order to obtain a urine sample.

“After 9-11, they instituted the Patriot Act … and I was all for it, because if you don’t commit a crime you have nothing to worry about,” Gawronski told the paper. “But, now, I see there are situations where access to information can be a problem. Everybody is human, and if the information is out there, it could be used for the wrong reasons.”

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